FC Barcelona vs. AC Milan

El campeón inició la defensa del título de Champions League.

​>>> De torcedor para torcedor: clique aqui e siga o 90min no Instagram! Nem só de vendas para o exterior será a janela de transferências do Palmeiras durante o período de recesso da Copa do Mundo. Há também a expectativa pela chegada de novos reforços para melhorar a qualidade do elenco, que já é tido como o mais farto do país. Um nome parece certo, apesar de ser uma opção "caseira": o jovem Vitinho. Revelado nas divisões de base do clube, o meia ​esteve emprestado ao Barcelona...
Palmeiras se planeja para receber reforço após pausa da Copa
​>>> De torcedor para torcedor: clique aqui e siga o 90min no Instagram! Nem só de vendas para o exterior será a janela de transferências do Palmeiras durante o período de recesso da Copa do Mundo. Há também a expectativa pela chegada de novos reforços para melhorar a qualidade do elenco, que já é tido como o mais farto do país. Um nome parece certo, apesar de ser uma opção "caseira": o jovem Vitinho. Revelado nas divisões de base do clube, o meia ​esteve emprestado ao Barcelona...
​>>> De torcedor para torcedor: clique aqui e siga o 90min no Instagram! Nem só de vendas para o exterior será a janela de transferências do Palmeiras durante o período de recesso da Copa do Mundo. Há também a expectativa pela chegada de novos reforços para melhorar a qualidade do elenco, que já é tido como o mais farto do país. Um nome parece certo, apesar de ser uma opção "caseira": o jovem Vitinho. Revelado nas divisões de base do clube, o meia ​esteve emprestado ao Barcelona...
Palmeiras se planeja para receber reforço após pausa da Copa
​>>> De torcedor para torcedor: clique aqui e siga o 90min no Instagram! Nem só de vendas para o exterior será a janela de transferências do Palmeiras durante o período de recesso da Copa do Mundo. Há também a expectativa pela chegada de novos reforços para melhorar a qualidade do elenco, que já é tido como o mais farto do país. Um nome parece certo, apesar de ser uma opção "caseira": o jovem Vitinho. Revelado nas divisões de base do clube, o meia ​esteve emprestado ao Barcelona...
Wie die spanische Sport berichtet, soll neben dem FC Barcelona nun auch Real Madrid großes Interesse an einer Verpflichtung von Thiago haben. Nach seinem im Spiel gegen Schweden erlittenen Nasenbeinbruch muss sich Bayern-Profi Rudy einer "kleinen Operation" unterziehen. Hier gibt es alle News zum FC Bayern im Überblick.
Bundesliga: Real und Barca buhlen um Bayern-Star
Wie die spanische Sport berichtet, soll neben dem FC Barcelona nun auch Real Madrid großes Interesse an einer Verpflichtung von Thiago haben. Nach seinem im Spiel gegen Schweden erlittenen Nasenbeinbruch muss sich Bayern-Profi Rudy einer "kleinen Operation" unterziehen. Hier gibt es alle News zum FC Bayern im Überblick.
Segundo o 'Sport', Real e Barça vão brigar por Thiago Alcântara (Foto: AFP)
Real Madrid entra na briga com o Barcelona por Thiago Alcântara
Segundo o 'Sport', Real e Barça vão brigar por Thiago Alcântara (Foto: AFP)
Auch wenn Lionel Messi an seinem 31. Geburtstag wegen des drohenden WM-Aus der Argentinier nicht in Feierlaune ist. Seine bisherige Karriere beim FC Barcelona ist beeindruckend.
Born This Day: Felicidades! Messi wird 31
Auch wenn Lionel Messi an seinem 31. Geburtstag wegen des drohenden WM-Aus der Argentinier nicht in Feierlaune ist. Seine bisherige Karriere beim FC Barcelona ist beeindruckend.
Auch wenn Lionel Messi an seinem 31. Geburtstag wegen des drohenden WM-Aus der Argentinier nicht in Feierlaune ist. Seine bisherige Karriere beim FC Barcelona ist beeindruckend.
Born This Day: Felicidades! Messi wird 31
Auch wenn Lionel Messi an seinem 31. Geburtstag wegen des drohenden WM-Aus der Argentinier nicht in Feierlaune ist. Seine bisherige Karriere beim FC Barcelona ist beeindruckend.
Auch wenn Lionel Messi an seinem 31. Geburtstag wegen des drohenden WM-Aus der Argentinier nicht in Feierlaune ist. Seine bisherige Karriere beim FC Barcelona ist beeindruckend.
Born This Day: Felicidades! Messi wird 31
Auch wenn Lionel Messi an seinem 31. Geburtstag wegen des drohenden WM-Aus der Argentinier nicht in Feierlaune ist. Seine bisherige Karriere beim FC Barcelona ist beeindruckend.
Auch wenn Lionel Messi an seinem 31. Geburtstag wegen des drohenden WM-Aus der Argentinier nicht in Feierlaune ist. Seine bisherige Karriere beim FC Barcelona ist beeindruckend.
Born This Day: Felicidades! Messi wird 31
Auch wenn Lionel Messi an seinem 31. Geburtstag wegen des drohenden WM-Aus der Argentinier nicht in Feierlaune ist. Seine bisherige Karriere beim FC Barcelona ist beeindruckend.
Auch wenn Lionel Messi an seinem 31. Geburtstag wegen des drohenden WM-Aus der Argentinier nicht in Feierlaune ist. Seine bisherige Karriere beim FC Barcelona ist beeindruckend.
Born This Day: Felicidades! Messi wird 31
Auch wenn Lionel Messi an seinem 31. Geburtstag wegen des drohenden WM-Aus der Argentinier nicht in Feierlaune ist. Seine bisherige Karriere beim FC Barcelona ist beeindruckend.
Auch wenn Lionel Messi an seinem 31. Geburtstag wegen des drohenden WM-Aus der Argentinier nicht in Feierlaune ist. Seine bisherige Karriere beim FC Barcelona ist beeindruckend.
Born This Day: Felicidades! Messi wird 31
Auch wenn Lionel Messi an seinem 31. Geburtstag wegen des drohenden WM-Aus der Argentinier nicht in Feierlaune ist. Seine bisherige Karriere beim FC Barcelona ist beeindruckend.
​El ​Barça lleva un tiempo interesado en el mediocentro del Bayern de Munich, Thiago. Se reforzaría en gran medida el centro del campo del club culé, algo que necesitan tras la marcha de Andrés Iniesta. El Bayern podría llegar a venderle por 70 millones de euros, una cantidad casi tres veces superior a la que pagó en 2013. Un negocio rentable para los alemanes, en especial por el rendimiento que ha dado a los bávaros. Sabe que ahora tendría un papel más protagonista que en aquella primera...
MERCADO | El futbolista por el que el Real Madrid y Barcelona protagonizarán la batalla del verano
​El ​Barça lleva un tiempo interesado en el mediocentro del Bayern de Munich, Thiago. Se reforzaría en gran medida el centro del campo del club culé, algo que necesitan tras la marcha de Andrés Iniesta. El Bayern podría llegar a venderle por 70 millones de euros, una cantidad casi tres veces superior a la que pagó en 2013. Un negocio rentable para los alemanes, en especial por el rendimiento que ha dado a los bávaros. Sabe que ahora tendría un papel más protagonista que en aquella primera...
​El ​Barça lleva un tiempo interesado en el mediocentro del Bayern de Munich, Thiago. Se reforzaría en gran medida el centro del campo del club culé, algo que necesitan tras la marcha de Andrés Iniesta. El Bayern podría llegar a venderle por 70 millones de euros, una cantidad casi tres veces superior a la que pagó en 2013. Un negocio rentable para los alemanes, en especial por el rendimiento que ha dado a los bávaros. Sabe que ahora tendría un papel más protagonista que en aquella primera...
MERCADO | El futbolista por el que el Real Madrid y Barcelona protagonizarán la batalla del verano
​El ​Barça lleva un tiempo interesado en el mediocentro del Bayern de Munich, Thiago. Se reforzaría en gran medida el centro del campo del club culé, algo que necesitan tras la marcha de Andrés Iniesta. El Bayern podría llegar a venderle por 70 millones de euros, una cantidad casi tres veces superior a la que pagó en 2013. Un negocio rentable para los alemanes, en especial por el rendimiento que ha dado a los bávaros. Sabe que ahora tendría un papel más protagonista que en aquella primera...
World Cup glory? A sixth Ballon d'Or? We light-heartedly assess what Lionel Messi might be wishing for on his 31st birthday.
Lionel Messi's birthday: What might the Barcelona star wish for?
World Cup glory? A sixth Ballon d'Or? We light-heartedly assess what Lionel Messi might be wishing for on his 31st birthday.
As Lionel Messi celebrates his 31st birthday, we look back at the best goals of the Barcelona and Argentina superstar's career.
Happy birthday, Lionel Messi! 10 of the Argentina star's best goals
As Lionel Messi celebrates his 31st birthday, we look back at the best goals of the Barcelona and Argentina superstar's career.
Lionel Messi gagal membawa Argentina menang di dua laga perdana Piala Dunia 2018.
Eks Pemain Barcelona Remehkan Mental Pemimpin Lionel Messi
Lionel Messi gagal membawa Argentina menang di dua laga perdana Piala Dunia 2018.
​El​ FC Barcelona anda buscando completar su centro del campo con un fichaje de garantías que tenga calidad para jugar en la posición de Andrés Iniesta. No parece suficiente con la llegada de Arthur, que tendrá que adaptarse al fútbol europeo, por lo que el club blaugrana maneja ahora la opción de fichar a un español que milita en la Premier y que tiene mucha calidad en sus botas. Estamos hablando de Juan Mata. Según el periodista Dean Jones, perteneciente al portal británico Bleacher Report,...
MERCADO | La opción secreta española del FC Barcelona para el centro del campo
​El​ FC Barcelona anda buscando completar su centro del campo con un fichaje de garantías que tenga calidad para jugar en la posición de Andrés Iniesta. No parece suficiente con la llegada de Arthur, que tendrá que adaptarse al fútbol europeo, por lo que el club blaugrana maneja ahora la opción de fichar a un español que milita en la Premier y que tiene mucha calidad en sus botas. Estamos hablando de Juan Mata. Según el periodista Dean Jones, perteneciente al portal británico Bleacher Report,...
Vitinho passou a última temporada emprestado ao Barcelona B (Foto: Divulgação)
Vitinho deve voltar ao Palmeiras após uma temporada pelo Barcelona B
Vitinho passou a última temporada emprestado ao Barcelona B (Foto: Divulgação)
El empresario catalán Victor Font, durante la entrevista concedida a la agencia Efe tras anunciar su intención de presentarse a las próximas elecciones a la presidencia del FC Barcelona. EFE
El empresario catalán Victor Font, durante la entrevista concedida a la agencia Efe tras anunciar su intención de presentarse a las próximas elecciones a la presidencia del FC Barcelona. EFE
El empresario catalán Victor Font, durante la entrevista concedida a la agencia Efe tras anunciar su intención de presentarse a las próximas elecciones a la presidencia del FC Barcelona. EFE
El empresario catalán Victor Font, durante la entrevista concedida a la agencia Efe tras anunciar su intención de presentarse a las próximas elecciones a la presidencia del FC Barcelona. EFE
El empresario catalán Victor Font, durante la entrevista concedida a la agencia Efe tras anunciar su intención de presentarse a las próximas elecciones a la presidencia del FC Barcelona. EFE
El empresario catalán Victor Font, durante la entrevista concedida a la agencia Efe tras anunciar su intención de presentarse a las próximas elecciones a la presidencia del FC Barcelona. EFE
El empresario catalán Victor Font, durante la entrevista concedida a la agencia Efe tras anunciar su intención de presentarse a las próximas elecciones a la presidencia del FC Barcelona. EFE
El empresario catalán Victor Font, durante la entrevista concedida a la agencia Efe tras anunciar su intención de presentarse a las próximas elecciones a la presidencia del FC Barcelona. EFE
El empresario catalán Victor Font, durante la entrevista concedida a la agencia Efe tras anunciar su intención de presentarse a las próximas elecciones a la presidencia del FC Barcelona. EFE
GRAF6523 BARCELONA 24/06/2018.- El empresario catalán Victor Font, durante la entrevista concedida a la agencia Efe tras anunciar su intención de presentarse a las próximas elecciones a la presidencia del FC Barcelona. EFE/ Quique García
GRAF6523 BARCELONA 24/06/2018.- El empresario catalán Victor Font, durante la entrevista concedida a la agencia Efe tras anunciar su intención de presentarse a las próximas elecciones a la presidencia del FC Barcelona. EFE/ Quique García
GRAF6523 BARCELONA 24/06/2018.- El empresario catalán Victor Font, durante la entrevista concedida a la agencia Efe tras anunciar su intención de presentarse a las próximas elecciones a la presidencia del FC Barcelona. EFE/ Quique García
The experienced defender has lavished praise upon the Real Madrid and Barcelona stars following his side's 3-0 win over Argentina
Modric and Rakitic the best midfield in Russia - Corluka
The experienced defender has lavished praise upon the Real Madrid and Barcelona stars following his side's 3-0 win over Argentina
El club pretende ceder al colombiano para que pueda seguir creciendo pero no descarta un traspaso si Fenerbahçe o Dortmund hacen una buena propuesta.
El Barcelona espera ofertas por Yerry Mina
El club pretende ceder al colombiano para que pueda seguir creciendo pero no descarta un traspaso si Fenerbahçe o Dortmund hacen una buena propuesta.
MU dan Barcelona pantau perkembangan Sastre.
MU dan Barcelona Bersaing Dapatkan Wonderkid Spanyol
MU dan Barcelona pantau perkembangan Sastre.
Lionel Messi is under fire at the World Cup and Barcelona team-mate Jordi Alba cannot understand the criticism.
Alba: I don't understand the criticism of Messi
Lionel Messi is under fire at the World Cup and Barcelona team-mate Jordi Alba cannot understand the criticism.
MU dan Barcelona pantau perkembangan Sastre.
MU dan Barcelona Bersaing Dapatkan Wonderkid Spanyol
MU dan Barcelona pantau perkembangan Sastre.
O craque do Barcelona está irreconhecível até agora na Rússia e seu ex-companheiro pediu para a Albiceleste ajudá-lo contra a Nigéria
Verón intrigado pelo declínio de estrela argentina: "O que aconteceu com Messi?"
O craque do Barcelona está irreconhecível até agora na Rússia e seu ex-companheiro pediu para a Albiceleste ajudá-lo contra a Nigéria
O craque do Barcelona está irreconhecível até agora na Rússia e seu ex-companheiro pediu para a Albiceleste ajudá-lo contra a Nigéria
Verón intrigado pelo declínio de estrela argentina: "O que aconteceu com Messi?"
O craque do Barcelona está irreconhecível até agora na Rússia e seu ex-companheiro pediu para a Albiceleste ajudá-lo contra a Nigéria
O craque do Barcelona está irreconhecível até agora na Rússia e seu ex-companheiro pediu para a Albiceleste ajudá-lo contra a Nigéria
Verón intrigado pelo declínio de estrela argentina: "O que aconteceu com Messi?"
O craque do Barcelona está irreconhecível até agora na Rússia e seu ex-companheiro pediu para a Albiceleste ajudá-lo contra a Nigéria
La secretaria general del PP y candidata a presidir el partido, María Dolores de Cospedal, acompañada de la ex ministra Dolors Montserrat, protagonizó este mediodía un acto de campaña con afiliados y simpatizantes en la sede del PP en Barcelona. EFE
La secretaria general del PP y candidata a presidir el partido, María Dolores de Cospedal, acompañada de la ex ministra Dolors Montserrat, protagonizó este mediodía un acto de campaña con afiliados y simpatizantes en la sede del PP en Barcelona. EFE
La secretaria general del PP y candidata a presidir el partido, María Dolores de Cospedal, acompañada de la ex ministra Dolors Montserrat, protagonizó este mediodía un acto de campaña con afiliados y simpatizantes en la sede del PP en Barcelona. EFE
La secretaria general del PP y candidata a presidir el partido, María Dolores de Cospedal, acompañada de la exministra Dolors Montserrat, protagonizó este mediodía un acto de campaña con afiliados y simpatizantes en la sede del PP en Barcelona. EFE
La secretaria general del PP y candidata a presidir el partido, María Dolores de Cospedal, acompañada de la exministra Dolors Montserrat, protagonizó este mediodía un acto de campaña con afiliados y simpatizantes en la sede del PP en Barcelona. EFE
La secretaria general del PP y candidata a presidir el partido, María Dolores de Cospedal, acompañada de la exministra Dolors Montserrat, protagonizó este mediodía un acto de campaña con afiliados y simpatizantes en la sede del PP en Barcelona. EFE
South Korea vs Mexico, World Cup 2018: Does Barcelona transfer make sense for Hirving Lozano? Scouting report
South Korea vs Mexico, World Cup 2018: Does Barcelona transfer make sense for Hirving Lozano? Scouting report
South Korea vs Mexico, World Cup 2018: Does Barcelona transfer make sense for Hirving Lozano? Scouting report
South Korea vs Mexico, World Cup 2018: Does Barcelona transfer make sense for Hirving Lozano? Scouting report
South Korea vs Mexico, World Cup 2018: Does Barcelona transfer make sense for Hirving Lozano? Scouting report
South Korea vs Mexico, World Cup 2018: Does Barcelona transfer make sense for Hirving Lozano? Scouting report
South Korea vs Mexico, World Cup 2018: Does Barcelona transfer make sense for Hirving Lozano? Scouting report
South Korea vs Mexico, World Cup 2018: Does Barcelona transfer make sense for Hirving Lozano? Scouting report
South Korea vs Mexico, World Cup 2018: Does Barcelona transfer make sense for Hirving Lozano? Scouting report
South Korea vs Mexico, World Cup 2018: Does Barcelona transfer make sense for Hirving Lozano? Scouting report
South Korea vs Mexico, World Cup 2018: Does Barcelona transfer make sense for Hirving Lozano? Scouting report
South Korea vs Mexico, World Cup 2018: Does Barcelona transfer make sense for Hirving Lozano? Scouting report
South Korea vs Mexico, World Cup 2018: Does Barcelona transfer make sense for Hirving Lozano? Scouting report
South Korea vs Mexico, World Cup 2018: Does Barcelona transfer make sense for Hirving Lozano? Scouting report
South Korea vs Mexico, World Cup 2018: Does Barcelona transfer make sense for Hirving Lozano? Scouting report
South Korea vs Mexico, World Cup 2018: Does Barcelona transfer make sense for Hirving Lozano? Scouting report
South Korea vs Mexico, World Cup 2018: Does Barcelona transfer make sense for Hirving Lozano? Scouting report
South Korea vs Mexico, World Cup 2018: Does Barcelona transfer make sense for Hirving Lozano? Scouting report
How England can get the job done against physical Panama Group standings and permutations Jim White: Fantastic fans and where to find them at World Cup 2018 Belgium in 2018: a team who create many more goalscoring chances than they convert with a 40-goal centre-forward who is only 25 years old - and yet with qualification almost assured, Romelu Lukaku is not likely to be a concern for England yet. Lukaku came off injured as Roberto Martinez’s team pasted Tunisia under warm summer rain in Moscow but not before the striker had scored the 39th and 40th goals of his international career. Had he scored them in an England shirt, Belgium’s all-time top goalscorer would currently be tied for fifth place on the all-time list with Michael Owen, who had a similarly prolific early career, but even he did not score as quickly as Lukaku. The Manchester United striker now has 23 goals and four assists in his last 20 games for his country and for all those chances that slip away this is a team that creates them by the bucketload. When Lukaku bears down on goal, or runs in behind onto a pass from one of the many creatives in this team, you can never be sure what kind of finish is coming but - as with his club - he finishes enough to be a very significant figure at this World Cup finals. There were two more for Eden Hazard as Belgium dismantled Tunisia in a way that England could never manage when they won in injury time against the North Africans in their opening game, and much of it was impressive. Hazard flitted around the Tunisia area, drawing one of the competition’s most reckless fouls from Syam Benyoussef after just four minutes which gave him a penalty that set Belgium on their way. Before the end, when the substitute Michy Batshuayi buried one of his five chances, it was possible to have lost count of all the opportunities that Belgium had passed up to make this game the biggest-margin win of the tournament so far. They still managed to concede a second in the third minute of injury time and it was that moment, and others, which will give their opponents in the later rounds reason to think. Lukaku, who came off with an ankle ligament injury that Martinez said will be assessed, looks unlikely to be in the team that faces England in Kaliningrad on Thursday. Belgium will qualify for the second round if England avoid defeat to Panama and Martinez said if that is the case he will make “major changes” for Thursday, including Hazard who has a calf problem. test - do not delete Even so, both nations facing the difficult question of whether first or second would be more advantageous. Martinez said he would only try to win Thursday’s game, although the thought must have occurred to him that second could be better. “Football has a strange knack of punishing you when you don’t do things professionally,” he said. “What’s important is that every player will have a role to play, we will take it very cautiously and approach the game against England really well. We won’t be thinking of anything other than approaching that game really well.” The obvious weakness is at the centre of the three-man Belgium defence where Dedryk Boyata, the Celtic defender, is not quite of the standard of Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen either side of him. He was well protected in this game but better opposition may well feel they can pick away at that defence and Tunisia’s breakthrough came from a left-sided free-kick. Tunisia were set up to try to win the game, although they never looked like they would from the moment Hazard was taken out around the ankles in the opening stages. Their coach, Nabil Maaloul, suggested that his players never recovered from that first penalty, even though they were briefly at 2-1 thanks to Dylan Bronn’s header from a Wahbi Khazri free-kick, with the defender then injured and substituted, one of two Tunisians who did not last the first half. World Cup 2018 | The best of the Telegraph's coverage They simply did not have the quality to break down Belgium more than a couple of occasions, although there was a high-quality performance from Khazri who got his goal right at the last. A desperate time at Sunderland seemed no impediment to a very promising World Cup finals for the man now on loan at Rennes and he was skilful and explosive when on the ball. Martinez said that it was an “open game” which was an understatement given the freedom Tunisia afforded their opponents and some of the passing was breathtaking, with Dries Mertens and Hazard combining for the move that lead to the penalty. “You have two options,” Martinez said. “To play through the press you have really good opportunities, and if you don’t get through the press you will concede chances.” The reality is that with Kevin De Bruyne, Hazard and Mertens there was no chance of Belgium not finding a way through. Lukaku’s shot for his first was scuffed slightly but deceived Farouk Benmustapha. The Manchester United man did not always have his first touch tuned up and one would later run away from him before he made it 3-1 with a delicate dink over Benmustapha from a fine straight ball from Thomas Meunier through the Tunisia defence. Romelu Lukaku dinks the ball past Tunisia's goalkeeper Credit: getty images That was just before half-time and at 3-1 down Tunisia had lost all shape and most of their hope. The fourth came from Alderweireld in the right channel who struck it from his own half, a long hit that dropped over the defence and Hazard took on his chest, then once with his left foot to steer past Benmustapha and another with his right to finish. The first Tunisia goal had come from a set-piece and Martinez said that the high number of goals from dead-balls was a consequence of the video assistant referees spotting grappling in the area. This time Bronn made a run from deep in the area and was not picked up by the Belgian defence, glancing a fine header past Thibaut Courtois. On as a substitute for Hazard, Batshuayi conspired to miss a run of chances, including one cleared off the line, another against the bar and one that Benmustapha actually saved. He finally slid one in at the back post before Khazri got his from substitute Hamid Naguez’s cross. Belgium had made their point - they have the goals in them, although the game against England is not shaping up to be the high-stakes decider it might have been. WorldCup - newsletter promo - end of article 3:10PM What a World Cup it's been So many goals. I love VAR, it's made things so much more fair, the right decisions are being made and it has gone to show how many fouls go unpunished in games. Up next is South Korea vs Mexico and you can follow all the action for that one in our liveblog right here. I'd also recommend signing up for this so you can get Whatsapp updates sent to your phone. World Cup whatsapp promo 3:01PM England up next in Group G Who will want to top the group? There's a big chance both teams play reserve teams if England can beat Panama. Speaking of which... How England can get the job done against physical Panama 2:59PM Roberto Martinez post-match Today was a different game. Panama were very deep and structured, you have to give Tunisia a lot of credit for pressing high up and making it an open game and in that respect it made a game with lots of action in both boxes. That desire to find the solutions in each game, we had to suffer in spells but when we were in full flow going forward we were really sharp and have things we need to keep doing well. 2:58PM An entertaining game Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Belgium shots on goal Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Tunisia shots on goal Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal 2:56PM FULL TIME And that's it! Tunisia are pumped out of the World Cup by an excellent Belgium performance. There are clear weaknesses in Martinez's team but they're just so entertaining to watch that you kinda hope they keep them. Goals are guaranteed when Belgium play and they should have had more than the five they got. 2:54PM GOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLL Khazri has scored. THE COMEBACK IS ON! Belgium 5 - 2 Tunisia (Wahbi Khazri, 90 + 3 min) It's not. 2:54PM 90 mins +2 - Belgium 5 Tunisia 1 And Batshuayi should have two. Tunisia's defence have fallen apart, understandably, and Batshuayi runs at them, cuts inside onto his left foot and then bends a shot wide of the post with the goalkeeper beaten. Miss: Belgium 5 - 1 Tunisia (Michy Batshuayi, 90 + 2 min) 2:51PM GOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLL! I was wrong! Batshuayi has his goal! It's an assist for Tielemans too! He swings a chipped ball from the right and Batshuayi's movement is superb, staying off the shoulder of his man and peeling away at the last second to meet the cross and finish into the bottom corner. 2:49PM 88 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Credit: REUTERS It doesn't look possible that Batshuayi could miss in this photo. But he did. He looks so driven to score in this game but you'd think the chances are gone now. 2:47PM 86 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Here comes Belgium's final substitute and it's Football Manager wonderkid Youri Tielemans. He was a captain at Anderlecht at (I think) 17 years old and is a central midfielder who can either hold the ball or attack. 2:45PM 84 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Since Fellaini has come on next to Witsel, De Bruyne has been allowed to get forward when he wants to and he's tearing Tunisia apart in the final third. He's just turned up in space wide left but not been able to take the ball down, having created the previous few chances for Belgium. 2:43PM 82 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 It's just not happening for Batshuayi here. De Bruyne gets into the box and passes across the area, Batshuayi meets it on the volley and forces a fantastic save from the goalkeeper. It's just one of those games for him. He could have had three goals by now - Lukaku could have secured the Golden Boot by now! 2:42PM 80 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Oh god that's an awful miss. Belgium's forward players are keen still and think they might some fun in front of goal. De Bruyne keeps a move going, Carrasco gets a hit at goal and then Batshuayi hits the bar from less than six yards. 2:39PM 77 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 BATSHUAYI IS IN! ROUND THE KEEPER! And it's blocked on the line. Great run by the striker and a fantastic take but his finish just isn't good enough to beat the covering defender. Needed more power there. Attempt Saved: Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Michy Batshuayi, 76 min) "It's really poor technique," says Phil Neville. 2:37PM 75 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 It's probably fair to say that some of the spark has gone out of this game. Belgium have gone into cruise control. But Batshuayi is keen to get involved and sprints in behind the defence... the goalkeeper comes five/10 yards out of his box and slides to save, taking the ball with his chest. Very nicely done indeed. 2:34PM 72 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Tunisia must know they're doomed here but they're still having a go. Courtois is the busier of the two goalkeepers at the moment. Vertonghen has just had Sliti header the side of his face, which looks pretty sore. He's OK to continue. 2:31PM 70 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Sliti wins a free-kick from Boyata and Khazri is sizing it up. He crosses... but it's cleared and then Khaoui blooters an effort miles over. Lots of shots over the bar in this World Cup. Is it the ball? Bad finishing? Over-excitement? 2:29PM 68 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 No hat-trick for Hazard either. Batshuayi replaces him. Seems like a sensible replacement by Martinez. 2:28PM 66 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Credit: REUTERS Sliti hits a snapshot at goal and wants a penalty because the ball pings off Alderweireld's elbow but it's never a penalty in a million years. Tunisia are probing the final third just now, looking for a chance to shoot... and Badri finds one! It's low and Courtois saves well. 2:26PM 64 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 The rain is pouring down now onto the pitch but it's still bright sunshine. I have nothing much else to say about the weather. Hazard tries a shot from 25 yards but puts it miles over. Miss: Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Eden Hazard, 64 min) 2:23PM 62 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Fellaini has dropped into midfield and De Bruyne has gone into the right inside-forward role, with Mertens taking the central striker position. He does that for Napoli and it's not a downgrade on Lukaku by any means. Tunisia get up the pitch and Belgium's defenders panic to get it clear... then Belgium get up the pitch and Carrasco has the ball on the edge of the box. He sets himself and then bends one towards the top corner. Inches away from making it five. Miss: Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Yannick Carrasco, 61 min) 2:21PM 59 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Boooooo. No hat-trick for Lukaku - he's substituted for Maroune Fellaini. He did pick up a wee knock in the first half so that could just be a safety-first type deal. Tunisia take Sassi off for Sliti. That one seems odd, Sassi's been doing pretty well. 2:18PM 57 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Eden Hazard in his last 20 games for Belgium. ⚽️ 10 goals ��️ 12 assists Leaving his mark. #bel#worldcup#tun#cfcpic.twitter.com/QJrJfnpi4t— Kristof Terreur �� (@HLNinEngeland) June 23, 2018 Ooooooh that would have been amazing. Sassi controls the ball about 25/30 yards out, looks up and spots Courtois is a little off his line. He tries a volley and gets the dip right but the direction wrong. Wide of the goal. And Belgium are in again! Carrasco has miles of space... but his first touch is poor and takes him wide. His second touch is a bad pass inside and the chances has gone. 2:16PM 55 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Belgium can just sit deep and wait to counter now, saving a bit of energy and taking advantage of Tunisia's desperate attempts to get anything out of this. That's if they even have it in them - that goal by Hazard is a knock-out blow and there's not really any way back now. Expect Belgium substitutions soon. 2:12PM GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLLL! But it doesn't matter because Hazard has scored again! Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Eden Hazard, 51 min) Belgium have dropped back into a counter-attacking, deeper shape and Hazard spots a chance to run in behind, gets the ball over the top and controls superbly, finishing past the goalkeeper and two defenders. 2:12PM 50 mins - Belgium 3 Tunisia 1 Tunisia find space in behind Meunier, the cross is sent in from the left and Khazri very nearly gets on the end of it. He's offside anyway but that's a decent move. And there's another shot! Badri finds space in front of the Belgium defence (it's been there all game long) and fires a lot effort at goal. Courtois can save easily but Tunisia have identified where the danger areas are. 2:10PM 49 mins - Belgium 3 Tunisia 1 Well worked corner by Belgium. De Bruyne goes short, Witsel gives it back and De Bruyne can fire a low ball into the area. Alderweireld gets across his man at the front post but shoots over. You can see here that Belgium's average shape is a lopsided 3-3-4. Seems to be working! Average touch positions (47 min) 2:08PM 47 mins - Belgium 3 Tunisia 1 That's an 18 minute half-time interval we've had there. Longer than usual but like I said, it's hot so they probably need it. All of a sudden Khazri is through on goal and tries a backheel flick volley inside the area. Courtois saves... but how did he find so much space that early in the half? 2:07PM KICK OFF 2 The other thing that might guarantee goals is that Tunisia will tire in this half. They've already lost two players through injury and so only have one substitution left. And it's hot - about 30 degrees celsius apparently - so they're bound to be drained later on. Tunisia start the second half. 2:04PM And the good news is Tunisia have to go for it now. If they don't win - or at least get a point - they're out of the World Cup. Might as well give it a fair old whack then eh? And just think of the space they'll leave for Hazard, De Bruyne, Mertens and Lukaku to attack? There are goals in this game to come. 2 - Romelu Lukaku is the first player with 2+ goals in consecutive #WorldCup games since Diego Maradona in 1986 (v England & Belgium). Star. pic.twitter.com/24eR5IqK61— OptaJohan (@OptaJohan) June 23, 2018 2:02PM Tomorrow's big game Don't forget (how could you?!) that we'll have live coverage of England's game vs Panama tomorrow. If you fancied some reading on that game, here's my tactical preview of it. How England can get the job done against physical Panama 1:57PM 27 consecutive World Cup games without a 0-0 draw That's a new record! We are living in the time of the greatest (most fun) World Cup ever. #lovegoals #goals 1:54PM Lukaku level with Ronaldo for goals scored Romelu Lukaku of Belgium scores his team's third goal past Farouk Ben Mustapha Credit: GETTY IMAGES The battle is on! Both players have four goals each now and I, for one, am absolutely gutted I forgot to put Lukaku in my Fantasy Football team. I was doing so well too. Lukaku has been excellent today. Didier Drogba sounds proud of his protege: "He's someone who wants to learn and I'm happy giving him advice. He gets from Thierry Henry too. I think when you want to be the best you have to learn from the best." 1:51PM Clinical Belgium finishing Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal That's pretty impressive. 1:49PM HALF TIME Well that was excellent fun. Belgium looked like they were going to destroy Tunisia in the opening 20 minutes but there's just something off about Martinez's team and they have vulnerabilities. Neither team has looked reliable at the back and had Tunisia's attacking play been as good as Belgium's, this might well be a draw at half time. 1:48PM GOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLL! LUKAKU SCORES AGAIN! Belgium 3 - 1 Tunisia (Romelu Lukaku, 45 + 3 min) It's brilliant play by Meunier who finds himself high up the pitch to block a disastrous pass from Maaloul - the guy who's having a horror show of a performance - and he just waits for Lukaku's run before slipping the ball the other side of the centre-back. Lukaku dinks it over the goalkeeper. 1:47PM 45 mins+2 - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia pushing for an equaliser before half time now but Belgium are behind the ball blocking their path to goal. And now Hazard is away! He bursts past one man, has De Bruyne to his right in a three on four, De Bruyne just has to make the final pass into Lukaku at the back post and it's a goal! But again he gets his measurements all wrong. Chance gone. 1:44PM 45 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 And now Vertonghen is down with a little injury. No stretcher this time though, which is a relief. Belgium attack down the left now, Tunisia putting in some strong challenges but without much success. Eventually a pass to Hazard rolls out for a goal kick. 1:42PM 43 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Both teams have been busy in front of goal. The attacks are working well but both sets of defenders keep giving possession away... and Khaoui has just won a corner from Boyata. First Tunisian corner of the game. Khazri comes across to take. Courtois catches. 1:41PM 41 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia have been forced into another change. Ben Yousseff. S is going to have to come off and will be replaced by Ben Alouane, who plays for Leicester. And when I say plays for Leicester, I mean is employed by. He played once for Leicester last season. 1:39PM 39 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Belgium press Tunisia's left hand side in numbers, win the ball high up the pitch and Hazard passes inside, Lukaku goes for a one-two with De Bruyne... but the final ball is poor and goes straight through to the goalkeeper. De Bruyne really hasn't been very good in this tournament so far. At least not by his standards. His final pass has often been overhit or sent in the wrong direction. 1:37PM 37 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 "Time to get some liquids on board," says the BBC commentator. I think I might go out for a pint of liquid later tonight after the final game. And I'm enjoying a bottle of liquid while I watch this match. Love that liquid. 1:36PM 36 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Khazri has been excellent so far. He's got something of a free role for Tunisia and is dropping into space to pick up the ball and carry it forward at speed, and there's a lot of space ahead of Belgium's defence for him to move into. This is where Martinez's 3-2-5 shape (because that's what it is most of the time) becomes problematic. On this attack, Khazri attempts a reverse through-ball into the box but puts it behind for a goal kick. Credit: GETTY IMAGES Khazri has gone down with an ankle injury for a bit. 1:33PM 34 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Lukaku is just off the pitch at the moment receiving some treatment to his right ankle. Meanwhile, Tunisia are keeping up a sustained period of pressure... and KHAZRI SHOOTS FROM DISTANCE! Courtois's spilled it! Luckily for him he can grab the bouncing ball for a Tunisian can nick a cheap goal. Lukaku seems to be OK to come back on the pitch... and now Mustapha has dropped the ball from a cross! Belgium focusing their attacks down the right wing to target the left-back. He's having a nightmare. 1:31PM 32 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia are terrible in defence but look dangerous going forward. Belgium's back five drift too far from the midfield and gift space for Tunisia's midfielders to drift into. Sassi turns up on the edge of the box in the centre of the pitch after an attack down the right wing, but can't get his shot on target. 1:30PM 30 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia's defence are all over the place here. They're struggling to play out from the back and have handed a chance on the edge of their own area. Lukaku passes to Witsel, who should pass inside to hand Mertens a free run on goal but instead shoots and blasts over the bar. Attempt Saved: Belgium 2 - 1 Tunisia (Axel Witsel, 28 min) It's so far over in fact that the shot doesn't even register on our shot map graphic. 1:27PM 28 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 De Bruyne and Lukaku are away! The former plays in the latter but his first touch takes the ball too far away and gives the goalie a chance. The keeper comes off his line, blocks the next touch and Lukaku goes down but acknowledges while falling that it's not a foul. With a better first touch Lukaku had his second goal there. 1:25PM 26 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia are attacking quickly, Khazri skips past Meunier into the box but his rabona cross/shot is caught by Courtois. Belgium build from the back but are in far too flat a shape and lose the ball to Tunisia's pressing. 1:24PM 24 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Bronn is taken off on a stretcher :-( In his place is Naguez, who has apparently been linked with Newcastle and Crystal Palace in the past. 1:21PM 22 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Credit: GETTY IMAGES Alderweireld is now in the right half space close to the box and GOES FOR A SHOT! Dragged wide. Bronn has gone down off the ball after blocking Carrasco's pass. He might have done some serious damage to his knee - it just seems to jar as he connects with the ball. Poor guy. 1:20PM 20 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 And it should be 3-1! Belgium attack quickly, Hazard finds room in the right half space to attack, plays the ball wide right, it's crossed in and then Carrasco meets it in the box. His volley is saved but pushed towards Mertens, who passes rather than shooting and the chance goes begging. What a start! 1:18PM GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLL!!! But this time it's Tunisia! Belgium 2 - 1 Tunisia (Dylan Bronn, 18 min) They win a free-kick high up the pitch and Khazri crosses in to the centre of the box. Bronn gets ahead of his man and glances the header into the bottom corner, beyond the diving Courtois. 1:16PM GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAALLLLLLL!!!!!! And it's a hiding. Lukaku scores! Belgium 2 - 0 Tunisia (Romelu Lukaku, 16 min) Belgium have a two on two, which becomes a one vs one for Lukaku and the Tunisia centre-back, who plays him onto his left foot (...) and Lukaku finishes low and hard to the far post. Brilliant finish. 1:15PM 15 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 This is absolutely pathetic by Khazri. He chases Vertonghen for the ball into the box, Vertonghen's fingers tap him in the face and he goes FLYING to the floor, howling in pain. He should be forced to stand trial in front of his family for that one, shown the replay while his children go "daddy... why are you cheating? You said we shouldn't cheat" but it's too late. The damage is done. Anyway, Belgium are in here! Lukakuuuuuuuu 1:13PM 13 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 Hazard does some excellent work to shield the ball on the goal line and keep an attack alive but the ball has to go back and Tunisia survive. Belgium win the ball back, it's shifted out right, Lukaku dribbles down the wing and crosses low and HAZARD IS THERE! He just doesn't connect properly inside the box and the goalkeeper has an easy save. 1:10PM 11 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 Hazard and Khaoui are having a little sit down after colliding at high speed and winding each other. Both are absolutely fine to continue but that won't have been enjoyable. 1:09PM 9 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 How will Tunisia respond to that early set back? Khazri tries to play in Ben Youssef down the right but passes to Belgium's defence. Belgium have started really well here. 1:06PM GOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLL!!! Hazard steps up real cool and slots the ball bottom left. What a start by Belgium! Belgium 1 - 0 Tunisia (Eden Hazard, 6 min) 1:05PM PENALTY! Great move by Belgium! It's short passing, fluid movement and Hazard has the ball on the edge of the area. A little stepover and burst of pace later and the defender is beaten, wiping Hazard out. Tunisia want a VAR review because they think it's outside the area.... The penalty stands! Hazard will take. 1:03PM 4 mins - Belgium 0 Tunisia 0 Tunisia push high up the pitch, want a free-kick but don't get it and Belgium break quickly! Lukaku chases a ball through to the goalkeeper and is about a yard away from beating him to it! Ben Mustapha wins this battle. Belgium keep up the pressure and Meunier cuts inside onto his left foot to shoot... but the goalie saves easily. 1:01PM 2 mins - Belgium 0 Tunisia 0 Belgium win a free-kick inside 30 seconds about 35 yards out. This could be dangerous! De Bruyne curls it into the box... but basically just kicks the ball straight to the goalkeeper. A poor start by him. 1:00PM KICK_OFF.exe Here we go! How many VAR penalties will we get in this game? Only time will tell! Belgium, wearing yellow, get the game started. 12:57PM National anthems time The players are on the pitch and now is time for Gianni Infantino to act like he's as important as an actual prime minister or president. Look at him in his suit next to world leaders. Thinks he's so cool. Anyway, this song should get you pumped for the match: Tunisia give the anthem some proper welly and the manager even breaks into tears. They win the 'battle of the anthems' this time. But what about the battle of the soccerball? 12:52PM Zabaleta on Hazard "One of the toughest opponents I would say to play against. He's so good especially on the turn and the way he drives the ball forward, he can go past two, three players and is so composed. When you play against a player like Hazard he doesn't think twice, he just takes it." 12:51PM Why did Chelsea make such a big mistake with De Bruyne? Lampard: "I don't think they missed it. We were there at the time. There was an embarrassment of riches, Oscar etc. He was getting restless... of course he slipped the net." 12:45PM Belgium vs Tunisia tactics Frank Lampard has pointed out how Tunisia close down the man on the ball in numbers to try and limit their passing options. What ends up happening with that three man defence is someone is left spare on the opposite side of the pitch. A quick pass to that wing and the defender can carry the ball out from the back into heaps of space. Belgium should be able to exploit that. 12:42PM Dan Walker is too tall A little peek behind the curtain for you. If you were wondering why @AlexScott seems taller today, this might be why.... �� @BBCOne �� https://t.co/V1j729hyMh#worldcup#bbcworldcup#BEL#TUN#BELTUNpic.twitter.com/gKhiqwnX4p— Match of the Day (@BBCMOTD) June 23, 2018 12:42PM This BBC chat is tremendous We are talking about Belgium here but the BBC panel is looking at England's options for their game against Panama. Gary Lineker has revealed that he's watched Ruben Loftus-Cheek since he was 11 because he played in the same team as his son, saying "I told him that if this kid doesn't make it I'd be really surprised". Meanwhile, in the other game in Group G, our man Sam Wallace has written this on another player who struggled to cut it at Chelsea despite huge potential. Romelu Lukaku's goalscoring rate is already remarkable, but he is far from the finished article 12:30PM Frank Lampard I'm paraphrasing this a little bit because my hands aren't typing as quickly as I want to yet. I'm getting warmed up. Don't worry. Anyway, Lampard has revealed his long, arduous journey from a comfortable upper-middle class background. "I went to a private school in Essex so I feel bad compared to these guys! What I did have was a father who pushed me. "It was a real eye opener when Chelsea became a bit more cosmopolitan and Didier etc came in, we maybe didn't realise how easy we had it because they told us stories about back home and you see how lucky you are." 12:28PM Ex-pros on their journey Pablo Zabaleta "We have a dream to play in Europe to play in the greatest league in the world. And it's really tough because you have to leave your friends, your family. I was 21 and I cannot complain, I went to Barcelona to Espanyol! You have to be mature for this, be a tough person for those moments." 12:27PM But who is going to win this game? World Cup 2018 Simulator Single Game Find out here! 12:26PM Romelu Lukaku interview The BBC have an incredible interview with Romelu Lukaku on screen at the moment. He reveals things like when he realised his family was broke, how he used to share football boots with his dad and a really sad story about how his granddad died just days before he signed a professional football deal - the contract he kept telling his mum would change their lives once he got it. Good lad. He's come a long way. Didier Drogba is his hero too and is talking about meeting Lukaku. "He came up to me and said 'oh I know this goal, this minute you scored'. I remember it very well. He said 'I remember it because I was nine at that time'! I was 34. Like, man. Time flies." 12:10PM Belgium unchanged Belgium manager Roberto Martinez picks the same side that beat Panama, whilst Tunisia makes just two changes from the side that lost to England. Goalkeeper Farouk Ben Mustapha comes in for Mouez Hassen, while Naim Sliti makes way for Saîf-Eddine Khaoui. The teams are in! #BELTUN ������ pic.twitter.com/DifsYqztQq— FIFA World Cup �� (@FIFAWorldCup) June 23, 2018 11:57AM Location, location, location Nine days in and fans have had a chance to see every stadium in action. They're glorious aren't they? The red and white Spartak Stadium looks tailor made for a match between Belgium, who play in red today, and Tunisia, who play in white. World Cup 2018 stadium: Spartak Stadium 11:43AM And on the ninth day... A warm welcome to another day of World Cup football. It can be unusually cruel at times, the World Cup, as we've already seen Morocco, Egpyt, and fan favourites Peru crash out. After so much waiting, so much preparation, and so many miles travelled, it can all be over so quickly. Today, Tunisia must win to have any realistic chance of staying in Russia. Lose, and they put their hopes on Panama beating England. As any England supporter will tell you, there's no chance that'll happen - I'm not sure if you've heard but, football's coming home. Tunisia fans ahead of their side's second World Cup match against Belgium Credit: Sergei Karpukhin/Reuters A lot of the drama at this World Cup has had little to do with the football so far. VAR and leaked team sheets have dominated the headlines, but Russia is screaming out for someone to grab it by the horns and put in a display fit for a champion. It could certainly be star-studded Belgium, unbeaten in their past ten World Cup group-stage matches. This a golden generation to envy, as they're bursting with so much talent that even Mousa Dembele, brilliant this year (and any year) for Tottenham, didn't get in the starting lineup in their first match against Panama. Belgium won anyway, with all three goals in a 3-0 win coming in the second half where we saw glimpses of what this side is capable of. Kevin De Brunye, Eden Hazard and Romelu Lukaku started to replicate the kind of form we're used to seeing in the Premiership - frightening. They can seal qualification to the second round with a win today, and start fulfilling some of the potential their squad promises. Tunisia's defense will certainly have their work cut out for them, but expect a higher line than we saw them play against England as they're forced to go out and find a winner. Belgium fans ahead of their match against Tunisia Credit: Sergei Karpukhin/Reuters One thing you can count on at the Russia 2018 World Cup is that the fans will be up for it. They've absolutely stolen the show so far, so expect another great display of support for both sides at the Spartak Stadium.
Romelu Lukaku and Eden Hazard run riot against Tunisia as Belgium qualify for World Cup knock-out stages
How England can get the job done against physical Panama Group standings and permutations Jim White: Fantastic fans and where to find them at World Cup 2018 Belgium in 2018: a team who create many more goalscoring chances than they convert with a 40-goal centre-forward who is only 25 years old - and yet with qualification almost assured, Romelu Lukaku is not likely to be a concern for England yet. Lukaku came off injured as Roberto Martinez’s team pasted Tunisia under warm summer rain in Moscow but not before the striker had scored the 39th and 40th goals of his international career. Had he scored them in an England shirt, Belgium’s all-time top goalscorer would currently be tied for fifth place on the all-time list with Michael Owen, who had a similarly prolific early career, but even he did not score as quickly as Lukaku. The Manchester United striker now has 23 goals and four assists in his last 20 games for his country and for all those chances that slip away this is a team that creates them by the bucketload. When Lukaku bears down on goal, or runs in behind onto a pass from one of the many creatives in this team, you can never be sure what kind of finish is coming but - as with his club - he finishes enough to be a very significant figure at this World Cup finals. There were two more for Eden Hazard as Belgium dismantled Tunisia in a way that England could never manage when they won in injury time against the North Africans in their opening game, and much of it was impressive. Hazard flitted around the Tunisia area, drawing one of the competition’s most reckless fouls from Syam Benyoussef after just four minutes which gave him a penalty that set Belgium on their way. Before the end, when the substitute Michy Batshuayi buried one of his five chances, it was possible to have lost count of all the opportunities that Belgium had passed up to make this game the biggest-margin win of the tournament so far. They still managed to concede a second in the third minute of injury time and it was that moment, and others, which will give their opponents in the later rounds reason to think. Lukaku, who came off with an ankle ligament injury that Martinez said will be assessed, looks unlikely to be in the team that faces England in Kaliningrad on Thursday. Belgium will qualify for the second round if England avoid defeat to Panama and Martinez said if that is the case he will make “major changes” for Thursday, including Hazard who has a calf problem. test - do not delete Even so, both nations facing the difficult question of whether first or second would be more advantageous. Martinez said he would only try to win Thursday’s game, although the thought must have occurred to him that second could be better. “Football has a strange knack of punishing you when you don’t do things professionally,” he said. “What’s important is that every player will have a role to play, we will take it very cautiously and approach the game against England really well. We won’t be thinking of anything other than approaching that game really well.” The obvious weakness is at the centre of the three-man Belgium defence where Dedryk Boyata, the Celtic defender, is not quite of the standard of Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen either side of him. He was well protected in this game but better opposition may well feel they can pick away at that defence and Tunisia’s breakthrough came from a left-sided free-kick. Tunisia were set up to try to win the game, although they never looked like they would from the moment Hazard was taken out around the ankles in the opening stages. Their coach, Nabil Maaloul, suggested that his players never recovered from that first penalty, even though they were briefly at 2-1 thanks to Dylan Bronn’s header from a Wahbi Khazri free-kick, with the defender then injured and substituted, one of two Tunisians who did not last the first half. World Cup 2018 | The best of the Telegraph's coverage They simply did not have the quality to break down Belgium more than a couple of occasions, although there was a high-quality performance from Khazri who got his goal right at the last. A desperate time at Sunderland seemed no impediment to a very promising World Cup finals for the man now on loan at Rennes and he was skilful and explosive when on the ball. Martinez said that it was an “open game” which was an understatement given the freedom Tunisia afforded their opponents and some of the passing was breathtaking, with Dries Mertens and Hazard combining for the move that lead to the penalty. “You have two options,” Martinez said. “To play through the press you have really good opportunities, and if you don’t get through the press you will concede chances.” The reality is that with Kevin De Bruyne, Hazard and Mertens there was no chance of Belgium not finding a way through. Lukaku’s shot for his first was scuffed slightly but deceived Farouk Benmustapha. The Manchester United man did not always have his first touch tuned up and one would later run away from him before he made it 3-1 with a delicate dink over Benmustapha from a fine straight ball from Thomas Meunier through the Tunisia defence. Romelu Lukaku dinks the ball past Tunisia's goalkeeper Credit: getty images That was just before half-time and at 3-1 down Tunisia had lost all shape and most of their hope. The fourth came from Alderweireld in the right channel who struck it from his own half, a long hit that dropped over the defence and Hazard took on his chest, then once with his left foot to steer past Benmustapha and another with his right to finish. The first Tunisia goal had come from a set-piece and Martinez said that the high number of goals from dead-balls was a consequence of the video assistant referees spotting grappling in the area. This time Bronn made a run from deep in the area and was not picked up by the Belgian defence, glancing a fine header past Thibaut Courtois. On as a substitute for Hazard, Batshuayi conspired to miss a run of chances, including one cleared off the line, another against the bar and one that Benmustapha actually saved. He finally slid one in at the back post before Khazri got his from substitute Hamid Naguez’s cross. Belgium had made their point - they have the goals in them, although the game against England is not shaping up to be the high-stakes decider it might have been. WorldCup - newsletter promo - end of article 3:10PM What a World Cup it's been So many goals. I love VAR, it's made things so much more fair, the right decisions are being made and it has gone to show how many fouls go unpunished in games. Up next is South Korea vs Mexico and you can follow all the action for that one in our liveblog right here. I'd also recommend signing up for this so you can get Whatsapp updates sent to your phone. World Cup whatsapp promo 3:01PM England up next in Group G Who will want to top the group? There's a big chance both teams play reserve teams if England can beat Panama. Speaking of which... How England can get the job done against physical Panama 2:59PM Roberto Martinez post-match Today was a different game. Panama were very deep and structured, you have to give Tunisia a lot of credit for pressing high up and making it an open game and in that respect it made a game with lots of action in both boxes. That desire to find the solutions in each game, we had to suffer in spells but when we were in full flow going forward we were really sharp and have things we need to keep doing well. 2:58PM An entertaining game Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Belgium shots on goal Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Tunisia shots on goal Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal 2:56PM FULL TIME And that's it! Tunisia are pumped out of the World Cup by an excellent Belgium performance. There are clear weaknesses in Martinez's team but they're just so entertaining to watch that you kinda hope they keep them. Goals are guaranteed when Belgium play and they should have had more than the five they got. 2:54PM GOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLL Khazri has scored. THE COMEBACK IS ON! Belgium 5 - 2 Tunisia (Wahbi Khazri, 90 + 3 min) It's not. 2:54PM 90 mins +2 - Belgium 5 Tunisia 1 And Batshuayi should have two. Tunisia's defence have fallen apart, understandably, and Batshuayi runs at them, cuts inside onto his left foot and then bends a shot wide of the post with the goalkeeper beaten. Miss: Belgium 5 - 1 Tunisia (Michy Batshuayi, 90 + 2 min) 2:51PM GOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLL! I was wrong! Batshuayi has his goal! It's an assist for Tielemans too! He swings a chipped ball from the right and Batshuayi's movement is superb, staying off the shoulder of his man and peeling away at the last second to meet the cross and finish into the bottom corner. 2:49PM 88 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Credit: REUTERS It doesn't look possible that Batshuayi could miss in this photo. But he did. He looks so driven to score in this game but you'd think the chances are gone now. 2:47PM 86 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Here comes Belgium's final substitute and it's Football Manager wonderkid Youri Tielemans. He was a captain at Anderlecht at (I think) 17 years old and is a central midfielder who can either hold the ball or attack. 2:45PM 84 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Since Fellaini has come on next to Witsel, De Bruyne has been allowed to get forward when he wants to and he's tearing Tunisia apart in the final third. He's just turned up in space wide left but not been able to take the ball down, having created the previous few chances for Belgium. 2:43PM 82 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 It's just not happening for Batshuayi here. De Bruyne gets into the box and passes across the area, Batshuayi meets it on the volley and forces a fantastic save from the goalkeeper. It's just one of those games for him. He could have had three goals by now - Lukaku could have secured the Golden Boot by now! 2:42PM 80 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Oh god that's an awful miss. Belgium's forward players are keen still and think they might some fun in front of goal. De Bruyne keeps a move going, Carrasco gets a hit at goal and then Batshuayi hits the bar from less than six yards. 2:39PM 77 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 BATSHUAYI IS IN! ROUND THE KEEPER! And it's blocked on the line. Great run by the striker and a fantastic take but his finish just isn't good enough to beat the covering defender. Needed more power there. Attempt Saved: Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Michy Batshuayi, 76 min) "It's really poor technique," says Phil Neville. 2:37PM 75 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 It's probably fair to say that some of the spark has gone out of this game. Belgium have gone into cruise control. But Batshuayi is keen to get involved and sprints in behind the defence... the goalkeeper comes five/10 yards out of his box and slides to save, taking the ball with his chest. Very nicely done indeed. 2:34PM 72 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Tunisia must know they're doomed here but they're still having a go. Courtois is the busier of the two goalkeepers at the moment. Vertonghen has just had Sliti header the side of his face, which looks pretty sore. He's OK to continue. 2:31PM 70 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Sliti wins a free-kick from Boyata and Khazri is sizing it up. He crosses... but it's cleared and then Khaoui blooters an effort miles over. Lots of shots over the bar in this World Cup. Is it the ball? Bad finishing? Over-excitement? 2:29PM 68 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 No hat-trick for Hazard either. Batshuayi replaces him. Seems like a sensible replacement by Martinez. 2:28PM 66 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Credit: REUTERS Sliti hits a snapshot at goal and wants a penalty because the ball pings off Alderweireld's elbow but it's never a penalty in a million years. Tunisia are probing the final third just now, looking for a chance to shoot... and Badri finds one! It's low and Courtois saves well. 2:26PM 64 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 The rain is pouring down now onto the pitch but it's still bright sunshine. I have nothing much else to say about the weather. Hazard tries a shot from 25 yards but puts it miles over. Miss: Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Eden Hazard, 64 min) 2:23PM 62 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Fellaini has dropped into midfield and De Bruyne has gone into the right inside-forward role, with Mertens taking the central striker position. He does that for Napoli and it's not a downgrade on Lukaku by any means. Tunisia get up the pitch and Belgium's defenders panic to get it clear... then Belgium get up the pitch and Carrasco has the ball on the edge of the box. He sets himself and then bends one towards the top corner. Inches away from making it five. Miss: Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Yannick Carrasco, 61 min) 2:21PM 59 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Boooooo. No hat-trick for Lukaku - he's substituted for Maroune Fellaini. He did pick up a wee knock in the first half so that could just be a safety-first type deal. Tunisia take Sassi off for Sliti. That one seems odd, Sassi's been doing pretty well. 2:18PM 57 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Eden Hazard in his last 20 games for Belgium. ⚽️ 10 goals ��️ 12 assists Leaving his mark. #bel#worldcup#tun#cfcpic.twitter.com/QJrJfnpi4t— Kristof Terreur �� (@HLNinEngeland) June 23, 2018 Ooooooh that would have been amazing. Sassi controls the ball about 25/30 yards out, looks up and spots Courtois is a little off his line. He tries a volley and gets the dip right but the direction wrong. Wide of the goal. And Belgium are in again! Carrasco has miles of space... but his first touch is poor and takes him wide. His second touch is a bad pass inside and the chances has gone. 2:16PM 55 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Belgium can just sit deep and wait to counter now, saving a bit of energy and taking advantage of Tunisia's desperate attempts to get anything out of this. That's if they even have it in them - that goal by Hazard is a knock-out blow and there's not really any way back now. Expect Belgium substitutions soon. 2:12PM GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLLL! But it doesn't matter because Hazard has scored again! Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Eden Hazard, 51 min) Belgium have dropped back into a counter-attacking, deeper shape and Hazard spots a chance to run in behind, gets the ball over the top and controls superbly, finishing past the goalkeeper and two defenders. 2:12PM 50 mins - Belgium 3 Tunisia 1 Tunisia find space in behind Meunier, the cross is sent in from the left and Khazri very nearly gets on the end of it. He's offside anyway but that's a decent move. And there's another shot! Badri finds space in front of the Belgium defence (it's been there all game long) and fires a lot effort at goal. Courtois can save easily but Tunisia have identified where the danger areas are. 2:10PM 49 mins - Belgium 3 Tunisia 1 Well worked corner by Belgium. De Bruyne goes short, Witsel gives it back and De Bruyne can fire a low ball into the area. Alderweireld gets across his man at the front post but shoots over. You can see here that Belgium's average shape is a lopsided 3-3-4. Seems to be working! Average touch positions (47 min) 2:08PM 47 mins - Belgium 3 Tunisia 1 That's an 18 minute half-time interval we've had there. Longer than usual but like I said, it's hot so they probably need it. All of a sudden Khazri is through on goal and tries a backheel flick volley inside the area. Courtois saves... but how did he find so much space that early in the half? 2:07PM KICK OFF 2 The other thing that might guarantee goals is that Tunisia will tire in this half. They've already lost two players through injury and so only have one substitution left. And it's hot - about 30 degrees celsius apparently - so they're bound to be drained later on. Tunisia start the second half. 2:04PM And the good news is Tunisia have to go for it now. If they don't win - or at least get a point - they're out of the World Cup. Might as well give it a fair old whack then eh? And just think of the space they'll leave for Hazard, De Bruyne, Mertens and Lukaku to attack? There are goals in this game to come. 2 - Romelu Lukaku is the first player with 2+ goals in consecutive #WorldCup games since Diego Maradona in 1986 (v England & Belgium). Star. pic.twitter.com/24eR5IqK61— OptaJohan (@OptaJohan) June 23, 2018 2:02PM Tomorrow's big game Don't forget (how could you?!) that we'll have live coverage of England's game vs Panama tomorrow. If you fancied some reading on that game, here's my tactical preview of it. How England can get the job done against physical Panama 1:57PM 27 consecutive World Cup games without a 0-0 draw That's a new record! We are living in the time of the greatest (most fun) World Cup ever. #lovegoals #goals 1:54PM Lukaku level with Ronaldo for goals scored Romelu Lukaku of Belgium scores his team's third goal past Farouk Ben Mustapha Credit: GETTY IMAGES The battle is on! Both players have four goals each now and I, for one, am absolutely gutted I forgot to put Lukaku in my Fantasy Football team. I was doing so well too. Lukaku has been excellent today. Didier Drogba sounds proud of his protege: "He's someone who wants to learn and I'm happy giving him advice. He gets from Thierry Henry too. I think when you want to be the best you have to learn from the best." 1:51PM Clinical Belgium finishing Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal That's pretty impressive. 1:49PM HALF TIME Well that was excellent fun. Belgium looked like they were going to destroy Tunisia in the opening 20 minutes but there's just something off about Martinez's team and they have vulnerabilities. Neither team has looked reliable at the back and had Tunisia's attacking play been as good as Belgium's, this might well be a draw at half time. 1:48PM GOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLL! LUKAKU SCORES AGAIN! Belgium 3 - 1 Tunisia (Romelu Lukaku, 45 + 3 min) It's brilliant play by Meunier who finds himself high up the pitch to block a disastrous pass from Maaloul - the guy who's having a horror show of a performance - and he just waits for Lukaku's run before slipping the ball the other side of the centre-back. Lukaku dinks it over the goalkeeper. 1:47PM 45 mins+2 - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia pushing for an equaliser before half time now but Belgium are behind the ball blocking their path to goal. And now Hazard is away! He bursts past one man, has De Bruyne to his right in a three on four, De Bruyne just has to make the final pass into Lukaku at the back post and it's a goal! But again he gets his measurements all wrong. Chance gone. 1:44PM 45 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 And now Vertonghen is down with a little injury. No stretcher this time though, which is a relief. Belgium attack down the left now, Tunisia putting in some strong challenges but without much success. Eventually a pass to Hazard rolls out for a goal kick. 1:42PM 43 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Both teams have been busy in front of goal. The attacks are working well but both sets of defenders keep giving possession away... and Khaoui has just won a corner from Boyata. First Tunisian corner of the game. Khazri comes across to take. Courtois catches. 1:41PM 41 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia have been forced into another change. Ben Yousseff. S is going to have to come off and will be replaced by Ben Alouane, who plays for Leicester. And when I say plays for Leicester, I mean is employed by. He played once for Leicester last season. 1:39PM 39 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Belgium press Tunisia's left hand side in numbers, win the ball high up the pitch and Hazard passes inside, Lukaku goes for a one-two with De Bruyne... but the final ball is poor and goes straight through to the goalkeeper. De Bruyne really hasn't been very good in this tournament so far. At least not by his standards. His final pass has often been overhit or sent in the wrong direction. 1:37PM 37 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 "Time to get some liquids on board," says the BBC commentator. I think I might go out for a pint of liquid later tonight after the final game. And I'm enjoying a bottle of liquid while I watch this match. Love that liquid. 1:36PM 36 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Khazri has been excellent so far. He's got something of a free role for Tunisia and is dropping into space to pick up the ball and carry it forward at speed, and there's a lot of space ahead of Belgium's defence for him to move into. This is where Martinez's 3-2-5 shape (because that's what it is most of the time) becomes problematic. On this attack, Khazri attempts a reverse through-ball into the box but puts it behind for a goal kick. Credit: GETTY IMAGES Khazri has gone down with an ankle injury for a bit. 1:33PM 34 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Lukaku is just off the pitch at the moment receiving some treatment to his right ankle. Meanwhile, Tunisia are keeping up a sustained period of pressure... and KHAZRI SHOOTS FROM DISTANCE! Courtois's spilled it! Luckily for him he can grab the bouncing ball for a Tunisian can nick a cheap goal. Lukaku seems to be OK to come back on the pitch... and now Mustapha has dropped the ball from a cross! Belgium focusing their attacks down the right wing to target the left-back. He's having a nightmare. 1:31PM 32 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia are terrible in defence but look dangerous going forward. Belgium's back five drift too far from the midfield and gift space for Tunisia's midfielders to drift into. Sassi turns up on the edge of the box in the centre of the pitch after an attack down the right wing, but can't get his shot on target. 1:30PM 30 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia's defence are all over the place here. They're struggling to play out from the back and have handed a chance on the edge of their own area. Lukaku passes to Witsel, who should pass inside to hand Mertens a free run on goal but instead shoots and blasts over the bar. Attempt Saved: Belgium 2 - 1 Tunisia (Axel Witsel, 28 min) It's so far over in fact that the shot doesn't even register on our shot map graphic. 1:27PM 28 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 De Bruyne and Lukaku are away! The former plays in the latter but his first touch takes the ball too far away and gives the goalie a chance. The keeper comes off his line, blocks the next touch and Lukaku goes down but acknowledges while falling that it's not a foul. With a better first touch Lukaku had his second goal there. 1:25PM 26 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia are attacking quickly, Khazri skips past Meunier into the box but his rabona cross/shot is caught by Courtois. Belgium build from the back but are in far too flat a shape and lose the ball to Tunisia's pressing. 1:24PM 24 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Bronn is taken off on a stretcher :-( In his place is Naguez, who has apparently been linked with Newcastle and Crystal Palace in the past. 1:21PM 22 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Credit: GETTY IMAGES Alderweireld is now in the right half space close to the box and GOES FOR A SHOT! Dragged wide. Bronn has gone down off the ball after blocking Carrasco's pass. He might have done some serious damage to his knee - it just seems to jar as he connects with the ball. Poor guy. 1:20PM 20 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 And it should be 3-1! Belgium attack quickly, Hazard finds room in the right half space to attack, plays the ball wide right, it's crossed in and then Carrasco meets it in the box. His volley is saved but pushed towards Mertens, who passes rather than shooting and the chance goes begging. What a start! 1:18PM GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLL!!! But this time it's Tunisia! Belgium 2 - 1 Tunisia (Dylan Bronn, 18 min) They win a free-kick high up the pitch and Khazri crosses in to the centre of the box. Bronn gets ahead of his man and glances the header into the bottom corner, beyond the diving Courtois. 1:16PM GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAALLLLLLL!!!!!! And it's a hiding. Lukaku scores! Belgium 2 - 0 Tunisia (Romelu Lukaku, 16 min) Belgium have a two on two, which becomes a one vs one for Lukaku and the Tunisia centre-back, who plays him onto his left foot (...) and Lukaku finishes low and hard to the far post. Brilliant finish. 1:15PM 15 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 This is absolutely pathetic by Khazri. He chases Vertonghen for the ball into the box, Vertonghen's fingers tap him in the face and he goes FLYING to the floor, howling in pain. He should be forced to stand trial in front of his family for that one, shown the replay while his children go "daddy... why are you cheating? You said we shouldn't cheat" but it's too late. The damage is done. Anyway, Belgium are in here! Lukakuuuuuuuu 1:13PM 13 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 Hazard does some excellent work to shield the ball on the goal line and keep an attack alive but the ball has to go back and Tunisia survive. Belgium win the ball back, it's shifted out right, Lukaku dribbles down the wing and crosses low and HAZARD IS THERE! He just doesn't connect properly inside the box and the goalkeeper has an easy save. 1:10PM 11 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 Hazard and Khaoui are having a little sit down after colliding at high speed and winding each other. Both are absolutely fine to continue but that won't have been enjoyable. 1:09PM 9 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 How will Tunisia respond to that early set back? Khazri tries to play in Ben Youssef down the right but passes to Belgium's defence. Belgium have started really well here. 1:06PM GOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLL!!! Hazard steps up real cool and slots the ball bottom left. What a start by Belgium! Belgium 1 - 0 Tunisia (Eden Hazard, 6 min) 1:05PM PENALTY! Great move by Belgium! It's short passing, fluid movement and Hazard has the ball on the edge of the area. A little stepover and burst of pace later and the defender is beaten, wiping Hazard out. Tunisia want a VAR review because they think it's outside the area.... The penalty stands! Hazard will take. 1:03PM 4 mins - Belgium 0 Tunisia 0 Tunisia push high up the pitch, want a free-kick but don't get it and Belgium break quickly! Lukaku chases a ball through to the goalkeeper and is about a yard away from beating him to it! Ben Mustapha wins this battle. Belgium keep up the pressure and Meunier cuts inside onto his left foot to shoot... but the goalie saves easily. 1:01PM 2 mins - Belgium 0 Tunisia 0 Belgium win a free-kick inside 30 seconds about 35 yards out. This could be dangerous! De Bruyne curls it into the box... but basically just kicks the ball straight to the goalkeeper. A poor start by him. 1:00PM KICK_OFF.exe Here we go! How many VAR penalties will we get in this game? Only time will tell! Belgium, wearing yellow, get the game started. 12:57PM National anthems time The players are on the pitch and now is time for Gianni Infantino to act like he's as important as an actual prime minister or president. Look at him in his suit next to world leaders. Thinks he's so cool. Anyway, this song should get you pumped for the match: Tunisia give the anthem some proper welly and the manager even breaks into tears. They win the 'battle of the anthems' this time. But what about the battle of the soccerball? 12:52PM Zabaleta on Hazard "One of the toughest opponents I would say to play against. He's so good especially on the turn and the way he drives the ball forward, he can go past two, three players and is so composed. When you play against a player like Hazard he doesn't think twice, he just takes it." 12:51PM Why did Chelsea make such a big mistake with De Bruyne? Lampard: "I don't think they missed it. We were there at the time. There was an embarrassment of riches, Oscar etc. He was getting restless... of course he slipped the net." 12:45PM Belgium vs Tunisia tactics Frank Lampard has pointed out how Tunisia close down the man on the ball in numbers to try and limit their passing options. What ends up happening with that three man defence is someone is left spare on the opposite side of the pitch. A quick pass to that wing and the defender can carry the ball out from the back into heaps of space. Belgium should be able to exploit that. 12:42PM Dan Walker is too tall A little peek behind the curtain for you. If you were wondering why @AlexScott seems taller today, this might be why.... �� @BBCOne �� https://t.co/V1j729hyMh#worldcup#bbcworldcup#BEL#TUN#BELTUNpic.twitter.com/gKhiqwnX4p— Match of the Day (@BBCMOTD) June 23, 2018 12:42PM This BBC chat is tremendous We are talking about Belgium here but the BBC panel is looking at England's options for their game against Panama. Gary Lineker has revealed that he's watched Ruben Loftus-Cheek since he was 11 because he played in the same team as his son, saying "I told him that if this kid doesn't make it I'd be really surprised". Meanwhile, in the other game in Group G, our man Sam Wallace has written this on another player who struggled to cut it at Chelsea despite huge potential. Romelu Lukaku's goalscoring rate is already remarkable, but he is far from the finished article 12:30PM Frank Lampard I'm paraphrasing this a little bit because my hands aren't typing as quickly as I want to yet. I'm getting warmed up. Don't worry. Anyway, Lampard has revealed his long, arduous journey from a comfortable upper-middle class background. "I went to a private school in Essex so I feel bad compared to these guys! What I did have was a father who pushed me. "It was a real eye opener when Chelsea became a bit more cosmopolitan and Didier etc came in, we maybe didn't realise how easy we had it because they told us stories about back home and you see how lucky you are." 12:28PM Ex-pros on their journey Pablo Zabaleta "We have a dream to play in Europe to play in the greatest league in the world. And it's really tough because you have to leave your friends, your family. I was 21 and I cannot complain, I went to Barcelona to Espanyol! You have to be mature for this, be a tough person for those moments." 12:27PM But who is going to win this game? World Cup 2018 Simulator Single Game Find out here! 12:26PM Romelu Lukaku interview The BBC have an incredible interview with Romelu Lukaku on screen at the moment. He reveals things like when he realised his family was broke, how he used to share football boots with his dad and a really sad story about how his granddad died just days before he signed a professional football deal - the contract he kept telling his mum would change their lives once he got it. Good lad. He's come a long way. Didier Drogba is his hero too and is talking about meeting Lukaku. "He came up to me and said 'oh I know this goal, this minute you scored'. I remember it very well. He said 'I remember it because I was nine at that time'! I was 34. Like, man. Time flies." 12:10PM Belgium unchanged Belgium manager Roberto Martinez picks the same side that beat Panama, whilst Tunisia makes just two changes from the side that lost to England. Goalkeeper Farouk Ben Mustapha comes in for Mouez Hassen, while Naim Sliti makes way for Saîf-Eddine Khaoui. The teams are in! #BELTUN ������ pic.twitter.com/DifsYqztQq— FIFA World Cup �� (@FIFAWorldCup) June 23, 2018 11:57AM Location, location, location Nine days in and fans have had a chance to see every stadium in action. They're glorious aren't they? The red and white Spartak Stadium looks tailor made for a match between Belgium, who play in red today, and Tunisia, who play in white. World Cup 2018 stadium: Spartak Stadium 11:43AM And on the ninth day... A warm welcome to another day of World Cup football. It can be unusually cruel at times, the World Cup, as we've already seen Morocco, Egpyt, and fan favourites Peru crash out. After so much waiting, so much preparation, and so many miles travelled, it can all be over so quickly. Today, Tunisia must win to have any realistic chance of staying in Russia. Lose, and they put their hopes on Panama beating England. As any England supporter will tell you, there's no chance that'll happen - I'm not sure if you've heard but, football's coming home. Tunisia fans ahead of their side's second World Cup match against Belgium Credit: Sergei Karpukhin/Reuters A lot of the drama at this World Cup has had little to do with the football so far. VAR and leaked team sheets have dominated the headlines, but Russia is screaming out for someone to grab it by the horns and put in a display fit for a champion. It could certainly be star-studded Belgium, unbeaten in their past ten World Cup group-stage matches. This a golden generation to envy, as they're bursting with so much talent that even Mousa Dembele, brilliant this year (and any year) for Tottenham, didn't get in the starting lineup in their first match against Panama. Belgium won anyway, with all three goals in a 3-0 win coming in the second half where we saw glimpses of what this side is capable of. Kevin De Brunye, Eden Hazard and Romelu Lukaku started to replicate the kind of form we're used to seeing in the Premiership - frightening. They can seal qualification to the second round with a win today, and start fulfilling some of the potential their squad promises. Tunisia's defense will certainly have their work cut out for them, but expect a higher line than we saw them play against England as they're forced to go out and find a winner. Belgium fans ahead of their match against Tunisia Credit: Sergei Karpukhin/Reuters One thing you can count on at the Russia 2018 World Cup is that the fans will be up for it. They've absolutely stolen the show so far, so expect another great display of support for both sides at the Spartak Stadium.
How England can get the job done against physical Panama Group standings and permutations Jim White: Fantastic fans and where to find them at World Cup 2018 Belgium in 2018: a team who create many more goalscoring chances than they convert with a 40-goal centre-forward who is only 25 years old - and yet with qualification almost assured, Romelu Lukaku is not likely to be a concern for England yet. Lukaku came off injured as Roberto Martinez’s team pasted Tunisia under warm summer rain in Moscow but not before the striker had scored the 39th and 40th goals of his international career. Had he scored them in an England shirt, Belgium’s all-time top goalscorer would currently be tied for fifth place on the all-time list with Michael Owen, who had a similarly prolific early career, but even he did not score as quickly as Lukaku. The Manchester United striker now has 23 goals and four assists in his last 20 games for his country and for all those chances that slip away this is a team that creates them by the bucketload. When Lukaku bears down on goal, or runs in behind onto a pass from one of the many creatives in this team, you can never be sure what kind of finish is coming but - as with his club - he finishes enough to be a very significant figure at this World Cup finals. There were two more for Eden Hazard as Belgium dismantled Tunisia in a way that England could never manage when they won in injury time against the North Africans in their opening game, and much of it was impressive. Hazard flitted around the Tunisia area, drawing one of the competition’s most reckless fouls from Syam Benyoussef after just four minutes which gave him a penalty that set Belgium on their way. Before the end, when the substitute Michy Batshuayi buried one of his five chances, it was possible to have lost count of all the opportunities that Belgium had passed up to make this game the biggest-margin win of the tournament so far. They still managed to concede a second in the third minute of injury time and it was that moment, and others, which will give their opponents in the later rounds reason to think. Lukaku, who came off with an ankle ligament injury that Martinez said will be assessed, looks unlikely to be in the team that faces England in Kaliningrad on Thursday. Belgium will qualify for the second round if England avoid defeat to Panama and Martinez said if that is the case he will make “major changes” for Thursday, including Hazard who has a calf problem. test - do not delete Even so, both nations facing the difficult question of whether first or second would be more advantageous. Martinez said he would only try to win Thursday’s game, although the thought must have occurred to him that second could be better. “Football has a strange knack of punishing you when you don’t do things professionally,” he said. “What’s important is that every player will have a role to play, we will take it very cautiously and approach the game against England really well. We won’t be thinking of anything other than approaching that game really well.” The obvious weakness is at the centre of the three-man Belgium defence where Dedryk Boyata, the Celtic defender, is not quite of the standard of Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen either side of him. He was well protected in this game but better opposition may well feel they can pick away at that defence and Tunisia’s breakthrough came from a left-sided free-kick. Tunisia were set up to try to win the game, although they never looked like they would from the moment Hazard was taken out around the ankles in the opening stages. Their coach, Nabil Maaloul, suggested that his players never recovered from that first penalty, even though they were briefly at 2-1 thanks to Dylan Bronn’s header from a Wahbi Khazri free-kick, with the defender then injured and substituted, one of two Tunisians who did not last the first half. World Cup 2018 | The best of the Telegraph's coverage They simply did not have the quality to break down Belgium more than a couple of occasions, although there was a high-quality performance from Khazri who got his goal right at the last. A desperate time at Sunderland seemed no impediment to a very promising World Cup finals for the man now on loan at Rennes and he was skilful and explosive when on the ball. Martinez said that it was an “open game” which was an understatement given the freedom Tunisia afforded their opponents and some of the passing was breathtaking, with Dries Mertens and Hazard combining for the move that lead to the penalty. “You have two options,” Martinez said. “To play through the press you have really good opportunities, and if you don’t get through the press you will concede chances.” The reality is that with Kevin De Bruyne, Hazard and Mertens there was no chance of Belgium not finding a way through. Lukaku’s shot for his first was scuffed slightly but deceived Farouk Benmustapha. The Manchester United man did not always have his first touch tuned up and one would later run away from him before he made it 3-1 with a delicate dink over Benmustapha from a fine straight ball from Thomas Meunier through the Tunisia defence. Romelu Lukaku dinks the ball past Tunisia's goalkeeper Credit: getty images That was just before half-time and at 3-1 down Tunisia had lost all shape and most of their hope. The fourth came from Alderweireld in the right channel who struck it from his own half, a long hit that dropped over the defence and Hazard took on his chest, then once with his left foot to steer past Benmustapha and another with his right to finish. The first Tunisia goal had come from a set-piece and Martinez said that the high number of goals from dead-balls was a consequence of the video assistant referees spotting grappling in the area. This time Bronn made a run from deep in the area and was not picked up by the Belgian defence, glancing a fine header past Thibaut Courtois. On as a substitute for Hazard, Batshuayi conspired to miss a run of chances, including one cleared off the line, another against the bar and one that Benmustapha actually saved. He finally slid one in at the back post before Khazri got his from substitute Hamid Naguez’s cross. Belgium had made their point - they have the goals in them, although the game against England is not shaping up to be the high-stakes decider it might have been. WorldCup - newsletter promo - end of article 3:10PM What a World Cup it's been So many goals. I love VAR, it's made things so much more fair, the right decisions are being made and it has gone to show how many fouls go unpunished in games. Up next is South Korea vs Mexico and you can follow all the action for that one in our liveblog right here. I'd also recommend signing up for this so you can get Whatsapp updates sent to your phone. World Cup whatsapp promo 3:01PM England up next in Group G Who will want to top the group? There's a big chance both teams play reserve teams if England can beat Panama. Speaking of which... How England can get the job done against physical Panama 2:59PM Roberto Martinez post-match Today was a different game. Panama were very deep and structured, you have to give Tunisia a lot of credit for pressing high up and making it an open game and in that respect it made a game with lots of action in both boxes. That desire to find the solutions in each game, we had to suffer in spells but when we were in full flow going forward we were really sharp and have things we need to keep doing well. 2:58PM An entertaining game Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Belgium shots on goal Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Tunisia shots on goal Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal 2:56PM FULL TIME And that's it! Tunisia are pumped out of the World Cup by an excellent Belgium performance. There are clear weaknesses in Martinez's team but they're just so entertaining to watch that you kinda hope they keep them. Goals are guaranteed when Belgium play and they should have had more than the five they got. 2:54PM GOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLL Khazri has scored. THE COMEBACK IS ON! Belgium 5 - 2 Tunisia (Wahbi Khazri, 90 + 3 min) It's not. 2:54PM 90 mins +2 - Belgium 5 Tunisia 1 And Batshuayi should have two. Tunisia's defence have fallen apart, understandably, and Batshuayi runs at them, cuts inside onto his left foot and then bends a shot wide of the post with the goalkeeper beaten. Miss: Belgium 5 - 1 Tunisia (Michy Batshuayi, 90 + 2 min) 2:51PM GOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLL! I was wrong! Batshuayi has his goal! It's an assist for Tielemans too! He swings a chipped ball from the right and Batshuayi's movement is superb, staying off the shoulder of his man and peeling away at the last second to meet the cross and finish into the bottom corner. 2:49PM 88 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Credit: REUTERS It doesn't look possible that Batshuayi could miss in this photo. But he did. He looks so driven to score in this game but you'd think the chances are gone now. 2:47PM 86 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Here comes Belgium's final substitute and it's Football Manager wonderkid Youri Tielemans. He was a captain at Anderlecht at (I think) 17 years old and is a central midfielder who can either hold the ball or attack. 2:45PM 84 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Since Fellaini has come on next to Witsel, De Bruyne has been allowed to get forward when he wants to and he's tearing Tunisia apart in the final third. He's just turned up in space wide left but not been able to take the ball down, having created the previous few chances for Belgium. 2:43PM 82 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 It's just not happening for Batshuayi here. De Bruyne gets into the box and passes across the area, Batshuayi meets it on the volley and forces a fantastic save from the goalkeeper. It's just one of those games for him. He could have had three goals by now - Lukaku could have secured the Golden Boot by now! 2:42PM 80 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Oh god that's an awful miss. Belgium's forward players are keen still and think they might some fun in front of goal. De Bruyne keeps a move going, Carrasco gets a hit at goal and then Batshuayi hits the bar from less than six yards. 2:39PM 77 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 BATSHUAYI IS IN! ROUND THE KEEPER! And it's blocked on the line. Great run by the striker and a fantastic take but his finish just isn't good enough to beat the covering defender. Needed more power there. Attempt Saved: Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Michy Batshuayi, 76 min) "It's really poor technique," says Phil Neville. 2:37PM 75 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 It's probably fair to say that some of the spark has gone out of this game. Belgium have gone into cruise control. But Batshuayi is keen to get involved and sprints in behind the defence... the goalkeeper comes five/10 yards out of his box and slides to save, taking the ball with his chest. Very nicely done indeed. 2:34PM 72 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Tunisia must know they're doomed here but they're still having a go. Courtois is the busier of the two goalkeepers at the moment. Vertonghen has just had Sliti header the side of his face, which looks pretty sore. He's OK to continue. 2:31PM 70 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Sliti wins a free-kick from Boyata and Khazri is sizing it up. He crosses... but it's cleared and then Khaoui blooters an effort miles over. Lots of shots over the bar in this World Cup. Is it the ball? Bad finishing? Over-excitement? 2:29PM 68 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 No hat-trick for Hazard either. Batshuayi replaces him. Seems like a sensible replacement by Martinez. 2:28PM 66 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Credit: REUTERS Sliti hits a snapshot at goal and wants a penalty because the ball pings off Alderweireld's elbow but it's never a penalty in a million years. Tunisia are probing the final third just now, looking for a chance to shoot... and Badri finds one! It's low and Courtois saves well. 2:26PM 64 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 The rain is pouring down now onto the pitch but it's still bright sunshine. I have nothing much else to say about the weather. Hazard tries a shot from 25 yards but puts it miles over. Miss: Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Eden Hazard, 64 min) 2:23PM 62 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Fellaini has dropped into midfield and De Bruyne has gone into the right inside-forward role, with Mertens taking the central striker position. He does that for Napoli and it's not a downgrade on Lukaku by any means. Tunisia get up the pitch and Belgium's defenders panic to get it clear... then Belgium get up the pitch and Carrasco has the ball on the edge of the box. He sets himself and then bends one towards the top corner. Inches away from making it five. Miss: Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Yannick Carrasco, 61 min) 2:21PM 59 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Boooooo. No hat-trick for Lukaku - he's substituted for Maroune Fellaini. He did pick up a wee knock in the first half so that could just be a safety-first type deal. Tunisia take Sassi off for Sliti. That one seems odd, Sassi's been doing pretty well. 2:18PM 57 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Eden Hazard in his last 20 games for Belgium. ⚽️ 10 goals ��️ 12 assists Leaving his mark. #bel#worldcup#tun#cfcpic.twitter.com/QJrJfnpi4t— Kristof Terreur �� (@HLNinEngeland) June 23, 2018 Ooooooh that would have been amazing. Sassi controls the ball about 25/30 yards out, looks up and spots Courtois is a little off his line. He tries a volley and gets the dip right but the direction wrong. Wide of the goal. And Belgium are in again! Carrasco has miles of space... but his first touch is poor and takes him wide. His second touch is a bad pass inside and the chances has gone. 2:16PM 55 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Belgium can just sit deep and wait to counter now, saving a bit of energy and taking advantage of Tunisia's desperate attempts to get anything out of this. That's if they even have it in them - that goal by Hazard is a knock-out blow and there's not really any way back now. Expect Belgium substitutions soon. 2:12PM GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLLL! But it doesn't matter because Hazard has scored again! Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Eden Hazard, 51 min) Belgium have dropped back into a counter-attacking, deeper shape and Hazard spots a chance to run in behind, gets the ball over the top and controls superbly, finishing past the goalkeeper and two defenders. 2:12PM 50 mins - Belgium 3 Tunisia 1 Tunisia find space in behind Meunier, the cross is sent in from the left and Khazri very nearly gets on the end of it. He's offside anyway but that's a decent move. And there's another shot! Badri finds space in front of the Belgium defence (it's been there all game long) and fires a lot effort at goal. Courtois can save easily but Tunisia have identified where the danger areas are. 2:10PM 49 mins - Belgium 3 Tunisia 1 Well worked corner by Belgium. De Bruyne goes short, Witsel gives it back and De Bruyne can fire a low ball into the area. Alderweireld gets across his man at the front post but shoots over. You can see here that Belgium's average shape is a lopsided 3-3-4. Seems to be working! Average touch positions (47 min) 2:08PM 47 mins - Belgium 3 Tunisia 1 That's an 18 minute half-time interval we've had there. Longer than usual but like I said, it's hot so they probably need it. All of a sudden Khazri is through on goal and tries a backheel flick volley inside the area. Courtois saves... but how did he find so much space that early in the half? 2:07PM KICK OFF 2 The other thing that might guarantee goals is that Tunisia will tire in this half. They've already lost two players through injury and so only have one substitution left. And it's hot - about 30 degrees celsius apparently - so they're bound to be drained later on. Tunisia start the second half. 2:04PM And the good news is Tunisia have to go for it now. If they don't win - or at least get a point - they're out of the World Cup. Might as well give it a fair old whack then eh? And just think of the space they'll leave for Hazard, De Bruyne, Mertens and Lukaku to attack? There are goals in this game to come. 2 - Romelu Lukaku is the first player with 2+ goals in consecutive #WorldCup games since Diego Maradona in 1986 (v England & Belgium). Star. pic.twitter.com/24eR5IqK61— OptaJohan (@OptaJohan) June 23, 2018 2:02PM Tomorrow's big game Don't forget (how could you?!) that we'll have live coverage of England's game vs Panama tomorrow. If you fancied some reading on that game, here's my tactical preview of it. How England can get the job done against physical Panama 1:57PM 27 consecutive World Cup games without a 0-0 draw That's a new record! We are living in the time of the greatest (most fun) World Cup ever. #lovegoals #goals 1:54PM Lukaku level with Ronaldo for goals scored Romelu Lukaku of Belgium scores his team's third goal past Farouk Ben Mustapha Credit: GETTY IMAGES The battle is on! Both players have four goals each now and I, for one, am absolutely gutted I forgot to put Lukaku in my Fantasy Football team. I was doing so well too. Lukaku has been excellent today. Didier Drogba sounds proud of his protege: "He's someone who wants to learn and I'm happy giving him advice. He gets from Thierry Henry too. I think when you want to be the best you have to learn from the best." 1:51PM Clinical Belgium finishing Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal That's pretty impressive. 1:49PM HALF TIME Well that was excellent fun. Belgium looked like they were going to destroy Tunisia in the opening 20 minutes but there's just something off about Martinez's team and they have vulnerabilities. Neither team has looked reliable at the back and had Tunisia's attacking play been as good as Belgium's, this might well be a draw at half time. 1:48PM GOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLL! LUKAKU SCORES AGAIN! Belgium 3 - 1 Tunisia (Romelu Lukaku, 45 + 3 min) It's brilliant play by Meunier who finds himself high up the pitch to block a disastrous pass from Maaloul - the guy who's having a horror show of a performance - and he just waits for Lukaku's run before slipping the ball the other side of the centre-back. Lukaku dinks it over the goalkeeper. 1:47PM 45 mins+2 - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia pushing for an equaliser before half time now but Belgium are behind the ball blocking their path to goal. And now Hazard is away! He bursts past one man, has De Bruyne to his right in a three on four, De Bruyne just has to make the final pass into Lukaku at the back post and it's a goal! But again he gets his measurements all wrong. Chance gone. 1:44PM 45 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 And now Vertonghen is down with a little injury. No stretcher this time though, which is a relief. Belgium attack down the left now, Tunisia putting in some strong challenges but without much success. Eventually a pass to Hazard rolls out for a goal kick. 1:42PM 43 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Both teams have been busy in front of goal. The attacks are working well but both sets of defenders keep giving possession away... and Khaoui has just won a corner from Boyata. First Tunisian corner of the game. Khazri comes across to take. Courtois catches. 1:41PM 41 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia have been forced into another change. Ben Yousseff. S is going to have to come off and will be replaced by Ben Alouane, who plays for Leicester. And when I say plays for Leicester, I mean is employed by. He played once for Leicester last season. 1:39PM 39 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Belgium press Tunisia's left hand side in numbers, win the ball high up the pitch and Hazard passes inside, Lukaku goes for a one-two with De Bruyne... but the final ball is poor and goes straight through to the goalkeeper. De Bruyne really hasn't been very good in this tournament so far. At least not by his standards. His final pass has often been overhit or sent in the wrong direction. 1:37PM 37 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 "Time to get some liquids on board," says the BBC commentator. I think I might go out for a pint of liquid later tonight after the final game. And I'm enjoying a bottle of liquid while I watch this match. Love that liquid. 1:36PM 36 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Khazri has been excellent so far. He's got something of a free role for Tunisia and is dropping into space to pick up the ball and carry it forward at speed, and there's a lot of space ahead of Belgium's defence for him to move into. This is where Martinez's 3-2-5 shape (because that's what it is most of the time) becomes problematic. On this attack, Khazri attempts a reverse through-ball into the box but puts it behind for a goal kick. Credit: GETTY IMAGES Khazri has gone down with an ankle injury for a bit. 1:33PM 34 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Lukaku is just off the pitch at the moment receiving some treatment to his right ankle. Meanwhile, Tunisia are keeping up a sustained period of pressure... and KHAZRI SHOOTS FROM DISTANCE! Courtois's spilled it! Luckily for him he can grab the bouncing ball for a Tunisian can nick a cheap goal. Lukaku seems to be OK to come back on the pitch... and now Mustapha has dropped the ball from a cross! Belgium focusing their attacks down the right wing to target the left-back. He's having a nightmare. 1:31PM 32 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia are terrible in defence but look dangerous going forward. Belgium's back five drift too far from the midfield and gift space for Tunisia's midfielders to drift into. Sassi turns up on the edge of the box in the centre of the pitch after an attack down the right wing, but can't get his shot on target. 1:30PM 30 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia's defence are all over the place here. They're struggling to play out from the back and have handed a chance on the edge of their own area. Lukaku passes to Witsel, who should pass inside to hand Mertens a free run on goal but instead shoots and blasts over the bar. Attempt Saved: Belgium 2 - 1 Tunisia (Axel Witsel, 28 min) It's so far over in fact that the shot doesn't even register on our shot map graphic. 1:27PM 28 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 De Bruyne and Lukaku are away! The former plays in the latter but his first touch takes the ball too far away and gives the goalie a chance. The keeper comes off his line, blocks the next touch and Lukaku goes down but acknowledges while falling that it's not a foul. With a better first touch Lukaku had his second goal there. 1:25PM 26 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia are attacking quickly, Khazri skips past Meunier into the box but his rabona cross/shot is caught by Courtois. Belgium build from the back but are in far too flat a shape and lose the ball to Tunisia's pressing. 1:24PM 24 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Bronn is taken off on a stretcher :-( In his place is Naguez, who has apparently been linked with Newcastle and Crystal Palace in the past. 1:21PM 22 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Credit: GETTY IMAGES Alderweireld is now in the right half space close to the box and GOES FOR A SHOT! Dragged wide. Bronn has gone down off the ball after blocking Carrasco's pass. He might have done some serious damage to his knee - it just seems to jar as he connects with the ball. Poor guy. 1:20PM 20 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 And it should be 3-1! Belgium attack quickly, Hazard finds room in the right half space to attack, plays the ball wide right, it's crossed in and then Carrasco meets it in the box. His volley is saved but pushed towards Mertens, who passes rather than shooting and the chance goes begging. What a start! 1:18PM GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLL!!! But this time it's Tunisia! Belgium 2 - 1 Tunisia (Dylan Bronn, 18 min) They win a free-kick high up the pitch and Khazri crosses in to the centre of the box. Bronn gets ahead of his man and glances the header into the bottom corner, beyond the diving Courtois. 1:16PM GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAALLLLLLL!!!!!! And it's a hiding. Lukaku scores! Belgium 2 - 0 Tunisia (Romelu Lukaku, 16 min) Belgium have a two on two, which becomes a one vs one for Lukaku and the Tunisia centre-back, who plays him onto his left foot (...) and Lukaku finishes low and hard to the far post. Brilliant finish. 1:15PM 15 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 This is absolutely pathetic by Khazri. He chases Vertonghen for the ball into the box, Vertonghen's fingers tap him in the face and he goes FLYING to the floor, howling in pain. He should be forced to stand trial in front of his family for that one, shown the replay while his children go "daddy... why are you cheating? You said we shouldn't cheat" but it's too late. The damage is done. Anyway, Belgium are in here! Lukakuuuuuuuu 1:13PM 13 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 Hazard does some excellent work to shield the ball on the goal line and keep an attack alive but the ball has to go back and Tunisia survive. Belgium win the ball back, it's shifted out right, Lukaku dribbles down the wing and crosses low and HAZARD IS THERE! He just doesn't connect properly inside the box and the goalkeeper has an easy save. 1:10PM 11 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 Hazard and Khaoui are having a little sit down after colliding at high speed and winding each other. Both are absolutely fine to continue but that won't have been enjoyable. 1:09PM 9 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 How will Tunisia respond to that early set back? Khazri tries to play in Ben Youssef down the right but passes to Belgium's defence. Belgium have started really well here. 1:06PM GOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLL!!! Hazard steps up real cool and slots the ball bottom left. What a start by Belgium! Belgium 1 - 0 Tunisia (Eden Hazard, 6 min) 1:05PM PENALTY! Great move by Belgium! It's short passing, fluid movement and Hazard has the ball on the edge of the area. A little stepover and burst of pace later and the defender is beaten, wiping Hazard out. Tunisia want a VAR review because they think it's outside the area.... The penalty stands! Hazard will take. 1:03PM 4 mins - Belgium 0 Tunisia 0 Tunisia push high up the pitch, want a free-kick but don't get it and Belgium break quickly! Lukaku chases a ball through to the goalkeeper and is about a yard away from beating him to it! Ben Mustapha wins this battle. Belgium keep up the pressure and Meunier cuts inside onto his left foot to shoot... but the goalie saves easily. 1:01PM 2 mins - Belgium 0 Tunisia 0 Belgium win a free-kick inside 30 seconds about 35 yards out. This could be dangerous! De Bruyne curls it into the box... but basically just kicks the ball straight to the goalkeeper. A poor start by him. 1:00PM KICK_OFF.exe Here we go! How many VAR penalties will we get in this game? Only time will tell! Belgium, wearing yellow, get the game started. 12:57PM National anthems time The players are on the pitch and now is time for Gianni Infantino to act like he's as important as an actual prime minister or president. Look at him in his suit next to world leaders. Thinks he's so cool. Anyway, this song should get you pumped for the match: Tunisia give the anthem some proper welly and the manager even breaks into tears. They win the 'battle of the anthems' this time. But what about the battle of the soccerball? 12:52PM Zabaleta on Hazard "One of the toughest opponents I would say to play against. He's so good especially on the turn and the way he drives the ball forward, he can go past two, three players and is so composed. When you play against a player like Hazard he doesn't think twice, he just takes it." 12:51PM Why did Chelsea make such a big mistake with De Bruyne? Lampard: "I don't think they missed it. We were there at the time. There was an embarrassment of riches, Oscar etc. He was getting restless... of course he slipped the net." 12:45PM Belgium vs Tunisia tactics Frank Lampard has pointed out how Tunisia close down the man on the ball in numbers to try and limit their passing options. What ends up happening with that three man defence is someone is left spare on the opposite side of the pitch. A quick pass to that wing and the defender can carry the ball out from the back into heaps of space. Belgium should be able to exploit that. 12:42PM Dan Walker is too tall A little peek behind the curtain for you. If you were wondering why @AlexScott seems taller today, this might be why.... �� @BBCOne �� https://t.co/V1j729hyMh#worldcup#bbcworldcup#BEL#TUN#BELTUNpic.twitter.com/gKhiqwnX4p— Match of the Day (@BBCMOTD) June 23, 2018 12:42PM This BBC chat is tremendous We are talking about Belgium here but the BBC panel is looking at England's options for their game against Panama. Gary Lineker has revealed that he's watched Ruben Loftus-Cheek since he was 11 because he played in the same team as his son, saying "I told him that if this kid doesn't make it I'd be really surprised". Meanwhile, in the other game in Group G, our man Sam Wallace has written this on another player who struggled to cut it at Chelsea despite huge potential. Romelu Lukaku's goalscoring rate is already remarkable, but he is far from the finished article 12:30PM Frank Lampard I'm paraphrasing this a little bit because my hands aren't typing as quickly as I want to yet. I'm getting warmed up. Don't worry. Anyway, Lampard has revealed his long, arduous journey from a comfortable upper-middle class background. "I went to a private school in Essex so I feel bad compared to these guys! What I did have was a father who pushed me. "It was a real eye opener when Chelsea became a bit more cosmopolitan and Didier etc came in, we maybe didn't realise how easy we had it because they told us stories about back home and you see how lucky you are." 12:28PM Ex-pros on their journey Pablo Zabaleta "We have a dream to play in Europe to play in the greatest league in the world. And it's really tough because you have to leave your friends, your family. I was 21 and I cannot complain, I went to Barcelona to Espanyol! You have to be mature for this, be a tough person for those moments." 12:27PM But who is going to win this game? World Cup 2018 Simulator Single Game Find out here! 12:26PM Romelu Lukaku interview The BBC have an incredible interview with Romelu Lukaku on screen at the moment. He reveals things like when he realised his family was broke, how he used to share football boots with his dad and a really sad story about how his granddad died just days before he signed a professional football deal - the contract he kept telling his mum would change their lives once he got it. Good lad. He's come a long way. Didier Drogba is his hero too and is talking about meeting Lukaku. "He came up to me and said 'oh I know this goal, this minute you scored'. I remember it very well. He said 'I remember it because I was nine at that time'! I was 34. Like, man. Time flies." 12:10PM Belgium unchanged Belgium manager Roberto Martinez picks the same side that beat Panama, whilst Tunisia makes just two changes from the side that lost to England. Goalkeeper Farouk Ben Mustapha comes in for Mouez Hassen, while Naim Sliti makes way for Saîf-Eddine Khaoui. The teams are in! #BELTUN ������ pic.twitter.com/DifsYqztQq— FIFA World Cup �� (@FIFAWorldCup) June 23, 2018 11:57AM Location, location, location Nine days in and fans have had a chance to see every stadium in action. They're glorious aren't they? The red and white Spartak Stadium looks tailor made for a match between Belgium, who play in red today, and Tunisia, who play in white. World Cup 2018 stadium: Spartak Stadium 11:43AM And on the ninth day... A warm welcome to another day of World Cup football. It can be unusually cruel at times, the World Cup, as we've already seen Morocco, Egpyt, and fan favourites Peru crash out. After so much waiting, so much preparation, and so many miles travelled, it can all be over so quickly. Today, Tunisia must win to have any realistic chance of staying in Russia. Lose, and they put their hopes on Panama beating England. As any England supporter will tell you, there's no chance that'll happen - I'm not sure if you've heard but, football's coming home. Tunisia fans ahead of their side's second World Cup match against Belgium Credit: Sergei Karpukhin/Reuters A lot of the drama at this World Cup has had little to do with the football so far. VAR and leaked team sheets have dominated the headlines, but Russia is screaming out for someone to grab it by the horns and put in a display fit for a champion. It could certainly be star-studded Belgium, unbeaten in their past ten World Cup group-stage matches. This a golden generation to envy, as they're bursting with so much talent that even Mousa Dembele, brilliant this year (and any year) for Tottenham, didn't get in the starting lineup in their first match against Panama. Belgium won anyway, with all three goals in a 3-0 win coming in the second half where we saw glimpses of what this side is capable of. Kevin De Brunye, Eden Hazard and Romelu Lukaku started to replicate the kind of form we're used to seeing in the Premiership - frightening. They can seal qualification to the second round with a win today, and start fulfilling some of the potential their squad promises. Tunisia's defense will certainly have their work cut out for them, but expect a higher line than we saw them play against England as they're forced to go out and find a winner. Belgium fans ahead of their match against Tunisia Credit: Sergei Karpukhin/Reuters One thing you can count on at the Russia 2018 World Cup is that the fans will be up for it. They've absolutely stolen the show so far, so expect another great display of support for both sides at the Spartak Stadium.
Romelu Lukaku and Eden Hazard run riot against Tunisia as Belgium qualify for World Cup knock-out stages
How England can get the job done against physical Panama Group standings and permutations Jim White: Fantastic fans and where to find them at World Cup 2018 Belgium in 2018: a team who create many more goalscoring chances than they convert with a 40-goal centre-forward who is only 25 years old - and yet with qualification almost assured, Romelu Lukaku is not likely to be a concern for England yet. Lukaku came off injured as Roberto Martinez’s team pasted Tunisia under warm summer rain in Moscow but not before the striker had scored the 39th and 40th goals of his international career. Had he scored them in an England shirt, Belgium’s all-time top goalscorer would currently be tied for fifth place on the all-time list with Michael Owen, who had a similarly prolific early career, but even he did not score as quickly as Lukaku. The Manchester United striker now has 23 goals and four assists in his last 20 games for his country and for all those chances that slip away this is a team that creates them by the bucketload. When Lukaku bears down on goal, or runs in behind onto a pass from one of the many creatives in this team, you can never be sure what kind of finish is coming but - as with his club - he finishes enough to be a very significant figure at this World Cup finals. There were two more for Eden Hazard as Belgium dismantled Tunisia in a way that England could never manage when they won in injury time against the North Africans in their opening game, and much of it was impressive. Hazard flitted around the Tunisia area, drawing one of the competition’s most reckless fouls from Syam Benyoussef after just four minutes which gave him a penalty that set Belgium on their way. Before the end, when the substitute Michy Batshuayi buried one of his five chances, it was possible to have lost count of all the opportunities that Belgium had passed up to make this game the biggest-margin win of the tournament so far. They still managed to concede a second in the third minute of injury time and it was that moment, and others, which will give their opponents in the later rounds reason to think. Lukaku, who came off with an ankle ligament injury that Martinez said will be assessed, looks unlikely to be in the team that faces England in Kaliningrad on Thursday. Belgium will qualify for the second round if England avoid defeat to Panama and Martinez said if that is the case he will make “major changes” for Thursday, including Hazard who has a calf problem. test - do not delete Even so, both nations facing the difficult question of whether first or second would be more advantageous. Martinez said he would only try to win Thursday’s game, although the thought must have occurred to him that second could be better. “Football has a strange knack of punishing you when you don’t do things professionally,” he said. “What’s important is that every player will have a role to play, we will take it very cautiously and approach the game against England really well. We won’t be thinking of anything other than approaching that game really well.” The obvious weakness is at the centre of the three-man Belgium defence where Dedryk Boyata, the Celtic defender, is not quite of the standard of Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen either side of him. He was well protected in this game but better opposition may well feel they can pick away at that defence and Tunisia’s breakthrough came from a left-sided free-kick. Tunisia were set up to try to win the game, although they never looked like they would from the moment Hazard was taken out around the ankles in the opening stages. Their coach, Nabil Maaloul, suggested that his players never recovered from that first penalty, even though they were briefly at 2-1 thanks to Dylan Bronn’s header from a Wahbi Khazri free-kick, with the defender then injured and substituted, one of two Tunisians who did not last the first half. World Cup 2018 | The best of the Telegraph's coverage They simply did not have the quality to break down Belgium more than a couple of occasions, although there was a high-quality performance from Khazri who got his goal right at the last. A desperate time at Sunderland seemed no impediment to a very promising World Cup finals for the man now on loan at Rennes and he was skilful and explosive when on the ball. Martinez said that it was an “open game” which was an understatement given the freedom Tunisia afforded their opponents and some of the passing was breathtaking, with Dries Mertens and Hazard combining for the move that lead to the penalty. “You have two options,” Martinez said. “To play through the press you have really good opportunities, and if you don’t get through the press you will concede chances.” The reality is that with Kevin De Bruyne, Hazard and Mertens there was no chance of Belgium not finding a way through. Lukaku’s shot for his first was scuffed slightly but deceived Farouk Benmustapha. The Manchester United man did not always have his first touch tuned up and one would later run away from him before he made it 3-1 with a delicate dink over Benmustapha from a fine straight ball from Thomas Meunier through the Tunisia defence. Romelu Lukaku dinks the ball past Tunisia's goalkeeper Credit: getty images That was just before half-time and at 3-1 down Tunisia had lost all shape and most of their hope. The fourth came from Alderweireld in the right channel who struck it from his own half, a long hit that dropped over the defence and Hazard took on his chest, then once with his left foot to steer past Benmustapha and another with his right to finish. The first Tunisia goal had come from a set-piece and Martinez said that the high number of goals from dead-balls was a consequence of the video assistant referees spotting grappling in the area. This time Bronn made a run from deep in the area and was not picked up by the Belgian defence, glancing a fine header past Thibaut Courtois. On as a substitute for Hazard, Batshuayi conspired to miss a run of chances, including one cleared off the line, another against the bar and one that Benmustapha actually saved. He finally slid one in at the back post before Khazri got his from substitute Hamid Naguez’s cross. Belgium had made their point - they have the goals in them, although the game against England is not shaping up to be the high-stakes decider it might have been. WorldCup - newsletter promo - end of article 3:10PM What a World Cup it's been So many goals. I love VAR, it's made things so much more fair, the right decisions are being made and it has gone to show how many fouls go unpunished in games. Up next is South Korea vs Mexico and you can follow all the action for that one in our liveblog right here. I'd also recommend signing up for this so you can get Whatsapp updates sent to your phone. World Cup whatsapp promo 3:01PM England up next in Group G Who will want to top the group? There's a big chance both teams play reserve teams if England can beat Panama. Speaking of which... How England can get the job done against physical Panama 2:59PM Roberto Martinez post-match Today was a different game. Panama were very deep and structured, you have to give Tunisia a lot of credit for pressing high up and making it an open game and in that respect it made a game with lots of action in both boxes. That desire to find the solutions in each game, we had to suffer in spells but when we were in full flow going forward we were really sharp and have things we need to keep doing well. 2:58PM An entertaining game Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Belgium shots on goal Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Tunisia shots on goal Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal 2:56PM FULL TIME And that's it! Tunisia are pumped out of the World Cup by an excellent Belgium performance. There are clear weaknesses in Martinez's team but they're just so entertaining to watch that you kinda hope they keep them. Goals are guaranteed when Belgium play and they should have had more than the five they got. 2:54PM GOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLL Khazri has scored. THE COMEBACK IS ON! Belgium 5 - 2 Tunisia (Wahbi Khazri, 90 + 3 min) It's not. 2:54PM 90 mins +2 - Belgium 5 Tunisia 1 And Batshuayi should have two. Tunisia's defence have fallen apart, understandably, and Batshuayi runs at them, cuts inside onto his left foot and then bends a shot wide of the post with the goalkeeper beaten. Miss: Belgium 5 - 1 Tunisia (Michy Batshuayi, 90 + 2 min) 2:51PM GOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLL! I was wrong! Batshuayi has his goal! It's an assist for Tielemans too! He swings a chipped ball from the right and Batshuayi's movement is superb, staying off the shoulder of his man and peeling away at the last second to meet the cross and finish into the bottom corner. 2:49PM 88 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Credit: REUTERS It doesn't look possible that Batshuayi could miss in this photo. But he did. He looks so driven to score in this game but you'd think the chances are gone now. 2:47PM 86 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Here comes Belgium's final substitute and it's Football Manager wonderkid Youri Tielemans. He was a captain at Anderlecht at (I think) 17 years old and is a central midfielder who can either hold the ball or attack. 2:45PM 84 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Since Fellaini has come on next to Witsel, De Bruyne has been allowed to get forward when he wants to and he's tearing Tunisia apart in the final third. He's just turned up in space wide left but not been able to take the ball down, having created the previous few chances for Belgium. 2:43PM 82 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 It's just not happening for Batshuayi here. De Bruyne gets into the box and passes across the area, Batshuayi meets it on the volley and forces a fantastic save from the goalkeeper. It's just one of those games for him. He could have had three goals by now - Lukaku could have secured the Golden Boot by now! 2:42PM 80 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Oh god that's an awful miss. Belgium's forward players are keen still and think they might some fun in front of goal. De Bruyne keeps a move going, Carrasco gets a hit at goal and then Batshuayi hits the bar from less than six yards. 2:39PM 77 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 BATSHUAYI IS IN! ROUND THE KEEPER! And it's blocked on the line. Great run by the striker and a fantastic take but his finish just isn't good enough to beat the covering defender. Needed more power there. Attempt Saved: Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Michy Batshuayi, 76 min) "It's really poor technique," says Phil Neville. 2:37PM 75 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 It's probably fair to say that some of the spark has gone out of this game. Belgium have gone into cruise control. But Batshuayi is keen to get involved and sprints in behind the defence... the goalkeeper comes five/10 yards out of his box and slides to save, taking the ball with his chest. Very nicely done indeed. 2:34PM 72 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Tunisia must know they're doomed here but they're still having a go. Courtois is the busier of the two goalkeepers at the moment. Vertonghen has just had Sliti header the side of his face, which looks pretty sore. He's OK to continue. 2:31PM 70 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Sliti wins a free-kick from Boyata and Khazri is sizing it up. He crosses... but it's cleared and then Khaoui blooters an effort miles over. Lots of shots over the bar in this World Cup. Is it the ball? Bad finishing? Over-excitement? 2:29PM 68 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 No hat-trick for Hazard either. Batshuayi replaces him. Seems like a sensible replacement by Martinez. 2:28PM 66 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Credit: REUTERS Sliti hits a snapshot at goal and wants a penalty because the ball pings off Alderweireld's elbow but it's never a penalty in a million years. Tunisia are probing the final third just now, looking for a chance to shoot... and Badri finds one! It's low and Courtois saves well. 2:26PM 64 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 The rain is pouring down now onto the pitch but it's still bright sunshine. I have nothing much else to say about the weather. Hazard tries a shot from 25 yards but puts it miles over. Miss: Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Eden Hazard, 64 min) 2:23PM 62 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Fellaini has dropped into midfield and De Bruyne has gone into the right inside-forward role, with Mertens taking the central striker position. He does that for Napoli and it's not a downgrade on Lukaku by any means. Tunisia get up the pitch and Belgium's defenders panic to get it clear... then Belgium get up the pitch and Carrasco has the ball on the edge of the box. He sets himself and then bends one towards the top corner. Inches away from making it five. Miss: Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Yannick Carrasco, 61 min) 2:21PM 59 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Boooooo. No hat-trick for Lukaku - he's substituted for Maroune Fellaini. He did pick up a wee knock in the first half so that could just be a safety-first type deal. Tunisia take Sassi off for Sliti. That one seems odd, Sassi's been doing pretty well. 2:18PM 57 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Eden Hazard in his last 20 games for Belgium. ⚽️ 10 goals ��️ 12 assists Leaving his mark. #bel#worldcup#tun#cfcpic.twitter.com/QJrJfnpi4t— Kristof Terreur �� (@HLNinEngeland) June 23, 2018 Ooooooh that would have been amazing. Sassi controls the ball about 25/30 yards out, looks up and spots Courtois is a little off his line. He tries a volley and gets the dip right but the direction wrong. Wide of the goal. And Belgium are in again! Carrasco has miles of space... but his first touch is poor and takes him wide. His second touch is a bad pass inside and the chances has gone. 2:16PM 55 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Belgium can just sit deep and wait to counter now, saving a bit of energy and taking advantage of Tunisia's desperate attempts to get anything out of this. That's if they even have it in them - that goal by Hazard is a knock-out blow and there's not really any way back now. Expect Belgium substitutions soon. 2:12PM GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLLL! But it doesn't matter because Hazard has scored again! Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Eden Hazard, 51 min) Belgium have dropped back into a counter-attacking, deeper shape and Hazard spots a chance to run in behind, gets the ball over the top and controls superbly, finishing past the goalkeeper and two defenders. 2:12PM 50 mins - Belgium 3 Tunisia 1 Tunisia find space in behind Meunier, the cross is sent in from the left and Khazri very nearly gets on the end of it. He's offside anyway but that's a decent move. And there's another shot! Badri finds space in front of the Belgium defence (it's been there all game long) and fires a lot effort at goal. Courtois can save easily but Tunisia have identified where the danger areas are. 2:10PM 49 mins - Belgium 3 Tunisia 1 Well worked corner by Belgium. De Bruyne goes short, Witsel gives it back and De Bruyne can fire a low ball into the area. Alderweireld gets across his man at the front post but shoots over. You can see here that Belgium's average shape is a lopsided 3-3-4. Seems to be working! Average touch positions (47 min) 2:08PM 47 mins - Belgium 3 Tunisia 1 That's an 18 minute half-time interval we've had there. Longer than usual but like I said, it's hot so they probably need it. All of a sudden Khazri is through on goal and tries a backheel flick volley inside the area. Courtois saves... but how did he find so much space that early in the half? 2:07PM KICK OFF 2 The other thing that might guarantee goals is that Tunisia will tire in this half. They've already lost two players through injury and so only have one substitution left. And it's hot - about 30 degrees celsius apparently - so they're bound to be drained later on. Tunisia start the second half. 2:04PM And the good news is Tunisia have to go for it now. If they don't win - or at least get a point - they're out of the World Cup. Might as well give it a fair old whack then eh? And just think of the space they'll leave for Hazard, De Bruyne, Mertens and Lukaku to attack? There are goals in this game to come. 2 - Romelu Lukaku is the first player with 2+ goals in consecutive #WorldCup games since Diego Maradona in 1986 (v England & Belgium). Star. pic.twitter.com/24eR5IqK61— OptaJohan (@OptaJohan) June 23, 2018 2:02PM Tomorrow's big game Don't forget (how could you?!) that we'll have live coverage of England's game vs Panama tomorrow. If you fancied some reading on that game, here's my tactical preview of it. How England can get the job done against physical Panama 1:57PM 27 consecutive World Cup games without a 0-0 draw That's a new record! We are living in the time of the greatest (most fun) World Cup ever. #lovegoals #goals 1:54PM Lukaku level with Ronaldo for goals scored Romelu Lukaku of Belgium scores his team's third goal past Farouk Ben Mustapha Credit: GETTY IMAGES The battle is on! Both players have four goals each now and I, for one, am absolutely gutted I forgot to put Lukaku in my Fantasy Football team. I was doing so well too. Lukaku has been excellent today. Didier Drogba sounds proud of his protege: "He's someone who wants to learn and I'm happy giving him advice. He gets from Thierry Henry too. I think when you want to be the best you have to learn from the best." 1:51PM Clinical Belgium finishing Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal That's pretty impressive. 1:49PM HALF TIME Well that was excellent fun. Belgium looked like they were going to destroy Tunisia in the opening 20 minutes but there's just something off about Martinez's team and they have vulnerabilities. Neither team has looked reliable at the back and had Tunisia's attacking play been as good as Belgium's, this might well be a draw at half time. 1:48PM GOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLL! LUKAKU SCORES AGAIN! Belgium 3 - 1 Tunisia (Romelu Lukaku, 45 + 3 min) It's brilliant play by Meunier who finds himself high up the pitch to block a disastrous pass from Maaloul - the guy who's having a horror show of a performance - and he just waits for Lukaku's run before slipping the ball the other side of the centre-back. Lukaku dinks it over the goalkeeper. 1:47PM 45 mins+2 - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia pushing for an equaliser before half time now but Belgium are behind the ball blocking their path to goal. And now Hazard is away! He bursts past one man, has De Bruyne to his right in a three on four, De Bruyne just has to make the final pass into Lukaku at the back post and it's a goal! But again he gets his measurements all wrong. Chance gone. 1:44PM 45 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 And now Vertonghen is down with a little injury. No stretcher this time though, which is a relief. Belgium attack down the left now, Tunisia putting in some strong challenges but without much success. Eventually a pass to Hazard rolls out for a goal kick. 1:42PM 43 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Both teams have been busy in front of goal. The attacks are working well but both sets of defenders keep giving possession away... and Khaoui has just won a corner from Boyata. First Tunisian corner of the game. Khazri comes across to take. Courtois catches. 1:41PM 41 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia have been forced into another change. Ben Yousseff. S is going to have to come off and will be replaced by Ben Alouane, who plays for Leicester. And when I say plays for Leicester, I mean is employed by. He played once for Leicester last season. 1:39PM 39 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Belgium press Tunisia's left hand side in numbers, win the ball high up the pitch and Hazard passes inside, Lukaku goes for a one-two with De Bruyne... but the final ball is poor and goes straight through to the goalkeeper. De Bruyne really hasn't been very good in this tournament so far. At least not by his standards. His final pass has often been overhit or sent in the wrong direction. 1:37PM 37 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 "Time to get some liquids on board," says the BBC commentator. I think I might go out for a pint of liquid later tonight after the final game. And I'm enjoying a bottle of liquid while I watch this match. Love that liquid. 1:36PM 36 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Khazri has been excellent so far. He's got something of a free role for Tunisia and is dropping into space to pick up the ball and carry it forward at speed, and there's a lot of space ahead of Belgium's defence for him to move into. This is where Martinez's 3-2-5 shape (because that's what it is most of the time) becomes problematic. On this attack, Khazri attempts a reverse through-ball into the box but puts it behind for a goal kick. Credit: GETTY IMAGES Khazri has gone down with an ankle injury for a bit. 1:33PM 34 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Lukaku is just off the pitch at the moment receiving some treatment to his right ankle. Meanwhile, Tunisia are keeping up a sustained period of pressure... and KHAZRI SHOOTS FROM DISTANCE! Courtois's spilled it! Luckily for him he can grab the bouncing ball for a Tunisian can nick a cheap goal. Lukaku seems to be OK to come back on the pitch... and now Mustapha has dropped the ball from a cross! Belgium focusing their attacks down the right wing to target the left-back. He's having a nightmare. 1:31PM 32 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia are terrible in defence but look dangerous going forward. Belgium's back five drift too far from the midfield and gift space for Tunisia's midfielders to drift into. Sassi turns up on the edge of the box in the centre of the pitch after an attack down the right wing, but can't get his shot on target. 1:30PM 30 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia's defence are all over the place here. They're struggling to play out from the back and have handed a chance on the edge of their own area. Lukaku passes to Witsel, who should pass inside to hand Mertens a free run on goal but instead shoots and blasts over the bar. Attempt Saved: Belgium 2 - 1 Tunisia (Axel Witsel, 28 min) It's so far over in fact that the shot doesn't even register on our shot map graphic. 1:27PM 28 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 De Bruyne and Lukaku are away! The former plays in the latter but his first touch takes the ball too far away and gives the goalie a chance. The keeper comes off his line, blocks the next touch and Lukaku goes down but acknowledges while falling that it's not a foul. With a better first touch Lukaku had his second goal there. 1:25PM 26 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia are attacking quickly, Khazri skips past Meunier into the box but his rabona cross/shot is caught by Courtois. Belgium build from the back but are in far too flat a shape and lose the ball to Tunisia's pressing. 1:24PM 24 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Bronn is taken off on a stretcher :-( In his place is Naguez, who has apparently been linked with Newcastle and Crystal Palace in the past. 1:21PM 22 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Credit: GETTY IMAGES Alderweireld is now in the right half space close to the box and GOES FOR A SHOT! Dragged wide. Bronn has gone down off the ball after blocking Carrasco's pass. He might have done some serious damage to his knee - it just seems to jar as he connects with the ball. Poor guy. 1:20PM 20 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 And it should be 3-1! Belgium attack quickly, Hazard finds room in the right half space to attack, plays the ball wide right, it's crossed in and then Carrasco meets it in the box. His volley is saved but pushed towards Mertens, who passes rather than shooting and the chance goes begging. What a start! 1:18PM GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLL!!! But this time it's Tunisia! Belgium 2 - 1 Tunisia (Dylan Bronn, 18 min) They win a free-kick high up the pitch and Khazri crosses in to the centre of the box. Bronn gets ahead of his man and glances the header into the bottom corner, beyond the diving Courtois. 1:16PM GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAALLLLLLL!!!!!! And it's a hiding. Lukaku scores! Belgium 2 - 0 Tunisia (Romelu Lukaku, 16 min) Belgium have a two on two, which becomes a one vs one for Lukaku and the Tunisia centre-back, who plays him onto his left foot (...) and Lukaku finishes low and hard to the far post. Brilliant finish. 1:15PM 15 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 This is absolutely pathetic by Khazri. He chases Vertonghen for the ball into the box, Vertonghen's fingers tap him in the face and he goes FLYING to the floor, howling in pain. He should be forced to stand trial in front of his family for that one, shown the replay while his children go "daddy... why are you cheating? You said we shouldn't cheat" but it's too late. The damage is done. Anyway, Belgium are in here! Lukakuuuuuuuu 1:13PM 13 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 Hazard does some excellent work to shield the ball on the goal line and keep an attack alive but the ball has to go back and Tunisia survive. Belgium win the ball back, it's shifted out right, Lukaku dribbles down the wing and crosses low and HAZARD IS THERE! He just doesn't connect properly inside the box and the goalkeeper has an easy save. 1:10PM 11 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 Hazard and Khaoui are having a little sit down after colliding at high speed and winding each other. Both are absolutely fine to continue but that won't have been enjoyable. 1:09PM 9 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 How will Tunisia respond to that early set back? Khazri tries to play in Ben Youssef down the right but passes to Belgium's defence. Belgium have started really well here. 1:06PM GOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLL!!! Hazard steps up real cool and slots the ball bottom left. What a start by Belgium! Belgium 1 - 0 Tunisia (Eden Hazard, 6 min) 1:05PM PENALTY! Great move by Belgium! It's short passing, fluid movement and Hazard has the ball on the edge of the area. A little stepover and burst of pace later and the defender is beaten, wiping Hazard out. Tunisia want a VAR review because they think it's outside the area.... The penalty stands! Hazard will take. 1:03PM 4 mins - Belgium 0 Tunisia 0 Tunisia push high up the pitch, want a free-kick but don't get it and Belgium break quickly! Lukaku chases a ball through to the goalkeeper and is about a yard away from beating him to it! Ben Mustapha wins this battle. Belgium keep up the pressure and Meunier cuts inside onto his left foot to shoot... but the goalie saves easily. 1:01PM 2 mins - Belgium 0 Tunisia 0 Belgium win a free-kick inside 30 seconds about 35 yards out. This could be dangerous! De Bruyne curls it into the box... but basically just kicks the ball straight to the goalkeeper. A poor start by him. 1:00PM KICK_OFF.exe Here we go! How many VAR penalties will we get in this game? Only time will tell! Belgium, wearing yellow, get the game started. 12:57PM National anthems time The players are on the pitch and now is time for Gianni Infantino to act like he's as important as an actual prime minister or president. Look at him in his suit next to world leaders. Thinks he's so cool. Anyway, this song should get you pumped for the match: Tunisia give the anthem some proper welly and the manager even breaks into tears. They win the 'battle of the anthems' this time. But what about the battle of the soccerball? 12:52PM Zabaleta on Hazard "One of the toughest opponents I would say to play against. He's so good especially on the turn and the way he drives the ball forward, he can go past two, three players and is so composed. When you play against a player like Hazard he doesn't think twice, he just takes it." 12:51PM Why did Chelsea make such a big mistake with De Bruyne? Lampard: "I don't think they missed it. We were there at the time. There was an embarrassment of riches, Oscar etc. He was getting restless... of course he slipped the net." 12:45PM Belgium vs Tunisia tactics Frank Lampard has pointed out how Tunisia close down the man on the ball in numbers to try and limit their passing options. What ends up happening with that three man defence is someone is left spare on the opposite side of the pitch. A quick pass to that wing and the defender can carry the ball out from the back into heaps of space. Belgium should be able to exploit that. 12:42PM Dan Walker is too tall A little peek behind the curtain for you. If you were wondering why @AlexScott seems taller today, this might be why.... �� @BBCOne �� https://t.co/V1j729hyMh#worldcup#bbcworldcup#BEL#TUN#BELTUNpic.twitter.com/gKhiqwnX4p— Match of the Day (@BBCMOTD) June 23, 2018 12:42PM This BBC chat is tremendous We are talking about Belgium here but the BBC panel is looking at England's options for their game against Panama. Gary Lineker has revealed that he's watched Ruben Loftus-Cheek since he was 11 because he played in the same team as his son, saying "I told him that if this kid doesn't make it I'd be really surprised". Meanwhile, in the other game in Group G, our man Sam Wallace has written this on another player who struggled to cut it at Chelsea despite huge potential. Romelu Lukaku's goalscoring rate is already remarkable, but he is far from the finished article 12:30PM Frank Lampard I'm paraphrasing this a little bit because my hands aren't typing as quickly as I want to yet. I'm getting warmed up. Don't worry. Anyway, Lampard has revealed his long, arduous journey from a comfortable upper-middle class background. "I went to a private school in Essex so I feel bad compared to these guys! What I did have was a father who pushed me. "It was a real eye opener when Chelsea became a bit more cosmopolitan and Didier etc came in, we maybe didn't realise how easy we had it because they told us stories about back home and you see how lucky you are." 12:28PM Ex-pros on their journey Pablo Zabaleta "We have a dream to play in Europe to play in the greatest league in the world. And it's really tough because you have to leave your friends, your family. I was 21 and I cannot complain, I went to Barcelona to Espanyol! You have to be mature for this, be a tough person for those moments." 12:27PM But who is going to win this game? World Cup 2018 Simulator Single Game Find out here! 12:26PM Romelu Lukaku interview The BBC have an incredible interview with Romelu Lukaku on screen at the moment. He reveals things like when he realised his family was broke, how he used to share football boots with his dad and a really sad story about how his granddad died just days before he signed a professional football deal - the contract he kept telling his mum would change their lives once he got it. Good lad. He's come a long way. Didier Drogba is his hero too and is talking about meeting Lukaku. "He came up to me and said 'oh I know this goal, this minute you scored'. I remember it very well. He said 'I remember it because I was nine at that time'! I was 34. Like, man. Time flies." 12:10PM Belgium unchanged Belgium manager Roberto Martinez picks the same side that beat Panama, whilst Tunisia makes just two changes from the side that lost to England. Goalkeeper Farouk Ben Mustapha comes in for Mouez Hassen, while Naim Sliti makes way for Saîf-Eddine Khaoui. The teams are in! #BELTUN ������ pic.twitter.com/DifsYqztQq— FIFA World Cup �� (@FIFAWorldCup) June 23, 2018 11:57AM Location, location, location Nine days in and fans have had a chance to see every stadium in action. They're glorious aren't they? The red and white Spartak Stadium looks tailor made for a match between Belgium, who play in red today, and Tunisia, who play in white. World Cup 2018 stadium: Spartak Stadium 11:43AM And on the ninth day... A warm welcome to another day of World Cup football. It can be unusually cruel at times, the World Cup, as we've already seen Morocco, Egpyt, and fan favourites Peru crash out. After so much waiting, so much preparation, and so many miles travelled, it can all be over so quickly. Today, Tunisia must win to have any realistic chance of staying in Russia. Lose, and they put their hopes on Panama beating England. As any England supporter will tell you, there's no chance that'll happen - I'm not sure if you've heard but, football's coming home. Tunisia fans ahead of their side's second World Cup match against Belgium Credit: Sergei Karpukhin/Reuters A lot of the drama at this World Cup has had little to do with the football so far. VAR and leaked team sheets have dominated the headlines, but Russia is screaming out for someone to grab it by the horns and put in a display fit for a champion. It could certainly be star-studded Belgium, unbeaten in their past ten World Cup group-stage matches. This a golden generation to envy, as they're bursting with so much talent that even Mousa Dembele, brilliant this year (and any year) for Tottenham, didn't get in the starting lineup in their first match against Panama. Belgium won anyway, with all three goals in a 3-0 win coming in the second half where we saw glimpses of what this side is capable of. Kevin De Brunye, Eden Hazard and Romelu Lukaku started to replicate the kind of form we're used to seeing in the Premiership - frightening. They can seal qualification to the second round with a win today, and start fulfilling some of the potential their squad promises. Tunisia's defense will certainly have their work cut out for them, but expect a higher line than we saw them play against England as they're forced to go out and find a winner. Belgium fans ahead of their match against Tunisia Credit: Sergei Karpukhin/Reuters One thing you can count on at the Russia 2018 World Cup is that the fans will be up for it. They've absolutely stolen the show so far, so expect another great display of support for both sides at the Spartak Stadium.
How England can get the job done against physical Panama Group standings and permutations Jim White: Fantastic fans and where to find them at World Cup 2018 Belgium in 2018: a team who create many more goalscoring chances than they convert with a 40-goal centre-forward who is only 25 years old - and yet with qualification almost assured, Romelu Lukaku is not likely to be a concern for England yet. Lukaku came off injured as Roberto Martinez’s team pasted Tunisia under warm summer rain in Moscow but not before the striker had scored the 39th and 40th goals of his international career. Had he scored them in an England shirt, Belgium’s all-time top goalscorer would currently be tied for fifth place on the all-time list with Michael Owen, who had a similarly prolific early career, but even he did not score as quickly as Lukaku. The Manchester United striker now has 23 goals and four assists in his last 20 games for his country and for all those chances that slip away this is a team that creates them by the bucketload. When Lukaku bears down on goal, or runs in behind onto a pass from one of the many creatives in this team, you can never be sure what kind of finish is coming but - as with his club - he finishes enough to be a very significant figure at this World Cup finals. There were two more for Eden Hazard as Belgium dismantled Tunisia in a way that England could never manage when they won in injury time against the North Africans in their opening game, and much of it was impressive. Hazard flitted around the Tunisia area, drawing one of the competition’s most reckless fouls from Syam Benyoussef after just four minutes which gave him a penalty that set Belgium on their way. Before the end, when the substitute Michy Batshuayi buried one of his five chances, it was possible to have lost count of all the opportunities that Belgium had passed up to make this game the biggest-margin win of the tournament so far. They still managed to concede a second in the third minute of injury time and it was that moment, and others, which will give their opponents in the later rounds reason to think. Lukaku, who came off with an ankle ligament injury that Martinez said will be assessed, looks unlikely to be in the team that faces England in Kaliningrad on Thursday. Belgium will qualify for the second round if England avoid defeat to Panama and Martinez said if that is the case he will make “major changes” for Thursday, including Hazard who has a calf problem. test - do not delete Even so, both nations facing the difficult question of whether first or second would be more advantageous. Martinez said he would only try to win Thursday’s game, although the thought must have occurred to him that second could be better. “Football has a strange knack of punishing you when you don’t do things professionally,” he said. “What’s important is that every player will have a role to play, we will take it very cautiously and approach the game against England really well. We won’t be thinking of anything other than approaching that game really well.” The obvious weakness is at the centre of the three-man Belgium defence where Dedryk Boyata, the Celtic defender, is not quite of the standard of Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen either side of him. He was well protected in this game but better opposition may well feel they can pick away at that defence and Tunisia’s breakthrough came from a left-sided free-kick. Tunisia were set up to try to win the game, although they never looked like they would from the moment Hazard was taken out around the ankles in the opening stages. Their coach, Nabil Maaloul, suggested that his players never recovered from that first penalty, even though they were briefly at 2-1 thanks to Dylan Bronn’s header from a Wahbi Khazri free-kick, with the defender then injured and substituted, one of two Tunisians who did not last the first half. World Cup 2018 | The best of the Telegraph's coverage They simply did not have the quality to break down Belgium more than a couple of occasions, although there was a high-quality performance from Khazri who got his goal right at the last. A desperate time at Sunderland seemed no impediment to a very promising World Cup finals for the man now on loan at Rennes and he was skilful and explosive when on the ball. Martinez said that it was an “open game” which was an understatement given the freedom Tunisia afforded their opponents and some of the passing was breathtaking, with Dries Mertens and Hazard combining for the move that lead to the penalty. “You have two options,” Martinez said. “To play through the press you have really good opportunities, and if you don’t get through the press you will concede chances.” The reality is that with Kevin De Bruyne, Hazard and Mertens there was no chance of Belgium not finding a way through. Lukaku’s shot for his first was scuffed slightly but deceived Farouk Benmustapha. The Manchester United man did not always have his first touch tuned up and one would later run away from him before he made it 3-1 with a delicate dink over Benmustapha from a fine straight ball from Thomas Meunier through the Tunisia defence. Romelu Lukaku dinks the ball past Tunisia's goalkeeper Credit: getty images That was just before half-time and at 3-1 down Tunisia had lost all shape and most of their hope. The fourth came from Alderweireld in the right channel who struck it from his own half, a long hit that dropped over the defence and Hazard took on his chest, then once with his left foot to steer past Benmustapha and another with his right to finish. The first Tunisia goal had come from a set-piece and Martinez said that the high number of goals from dead-balls was a consequence of the video assistant referees spotting grappling in the area. This time Bronn made a run from deep in the area and was not picked up by the Belgian defence, glancing a fine header past Thibaut Courtois. On as a substitute for Hazard, Batshuayi conspired to miss a run of chances, including one cleared off the line, another against the bar and one that Benmustapha actually saved. He finally slid one in at the back post before Khazri got his from substitute Hamid Naguez’s cross. Belgium had made their point - they have the goals in them, although the game against England is not shaping up to be the high-stakes decider it might have been. WorldCup - newsletter promo - end of article 3:10PM What a World Cup it's been So many goals. I love VAR, it's made things so much more fair, the right decisions are being made and it has gone to show how many fouls go unpunished in games. Up next is South Korea vs Mexico and you can follow all the action for that one in our liveblog right here. I'd also recommend signing up for this so you can get Whatsapp updates sent to your phone. World Cup whatsapp promo 3:01PM England up next in Group G Who will want to top the group? There's a big chance both teams play reserve teams if England can beat Panama. Speaking of which... How England can get the job done against physical Panama 2:59PM Roberto Martinez post-match Today was a different game. Panama were very deep and structured, you have to give Tunisia a lot of credit for pressing high up and making it an open game and in that respect it made a game with lots of action in both boxes. That desire to find the solutions in each game, we had to suffer in spells but when we were in full flow going forward we were really sharp and have things we need to keep doing well. 2:58PM An entertaining game Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Belgium shots on goal Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Tunisia shots on goal Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal 2:56PM FULL TIME And that's it! Tunisia are pumped out of the World Cup by an excellent Belgium performance. There are clear weaknesses in Martinez's team but they're just so entertaining to watch that you kinda hope they keep them. Goals are guaranteed when Belgium play and they should have had more than the five they got. 2:54PM GOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLL Khazri has scored. THE COMEBACK IS ON! Belgium 5 - 2 Tunisia (Wahbi Khazri, 90 + 3 min) It's not. 2:54PM 90 mins +2 - Belgium 5 Tunisia 1 And Batshuayi should have two. Tunisia's defence have fallen apart, understandably, and Batshuayi runs at them, cuts inside onto his left foot and then bends a shot wide of the post with the goalkeeper beaten. Miss: Belgium 5 - 1 Tunisia (Michy Batshuayi, 90 + 2 min) 2:51PM GOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLL! I was wrong! Batshuayi has his goal! It's an assist for Tielemans too! He swings a chipped ball from the right and Batshuayi's movement is superb, staying off the shoulder of his man and peeling away at the last second to meet the cross and finish into the bottom corner. 2:49PM 88 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Credit: REUTERS It doesn't look possible that Batshuayi could miss in this photo. But he did. He looks so driven to score in this game but you'd think the chances are gone now. 2:47PM 86 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Here comes Belgium's final substitute and it's Football Manager wonderkid Youri Tielemans. He was a captain at Anderlecht at (I think) 17 years old and is a central midfielder who can either hold the ball or attack. 2:45PM 84 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Since Fellaini has come on next to Witsel, De Bruyne has been allowed to get forward when he wants to and he's tearing Tunisia apart in the final third. He's just turned up in space wide left but not been able to take the ball down, having created the previous few chances for Belgium. 2:43PM 82 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 It's just not happening for Batshuayi here. De Bruyne gets into the box and passes across the area, Batshuayi meets it on the volley and forces a fantastic save from the goalkeeper. It's just one of those games for him. He could have had three goals by now - Lukaku could have secured the Golden Boot by now! 2:42PM 80 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Oh god that's an awful miss. Belgium's forward players are keen still and think they might some fun in front of goal. De Bruyne keeps a move going, Carrasco gets a hit at goal and then Batshuayi hits the bar from less than six yards. 2:39PM 77 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 BATSHUAYI IS IN! ROUND THE KEEPER! And it's blocked on the line. Great run by the striker and a fantastic take but his finish just isn't good enough to beat the covering defender. Needed more power there. Attempt Saved: Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Michy Batshuayi, 76 min) "It's really poor technique," says Phil Neville. 2:37PM 75 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 It's probably fair to say that some of the spark has gone out of this game. Belgium have gone into cruise control. But Batshuayi is keen to get involved and sprints in behind the defence... the goalkeeper comes five/10 yards out of his box and slides to save, taking the ball with his chest. Very nicely done indeed. 2:34PM 72 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Tunisia must know they're doomed here but they're still having a go. Courtois is the busier of the two goalkeepers at the moment. Vertonghen has just had Sliti header the side of his face, which looks pretty sore. He's OK to continue. 2:31PM 70 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Sliti wins a free-kick from Boyata and Khazri is sizing it up. He crosses... but it's cleared and then Khaoui blooters an effort miles over. Lots of shots over the bar in this World Cup. Is it the ball? Bad finishing? Over-excitement? 2:29PM 68 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 No hat-trick for Hazard either. Batshuayi replaces him. Seems like a sensible replacement by Martinez. 2:28PM 66 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Credit: REUTERS Sliti hits a snapshot at goal and wants a penalty because the ball pings off Alderweireld's elbow but it's never a penalty in a million years. Tunisia are probing the final third just now, looking for a chance to shoot... and Badri finds one! It's low and Courtois saves well. 2:26PM 64 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 The rain is pouring down now onto the pitch but it's still bright sunshine. I have nothing much else to say about the weather. Hazard tries a shot from 25 yards but puts it miles over. Miss: Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Eden Hazard, 64 min) 2:23PM 62 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Fellaini has dropped into midfield and De Bruyne has gone into the right inside-forward role, with Mertens taking the central striker position. He does that for Napoli and it's not a downgrade on Lukaku by any means. Tunisia get up the pitch and Belgium's defenders panic to get it clear... then Belgium get up the pitch and Carrasco has the ball on the edge of the box. He sets himself and then bends one towards the top corner. Inches away from making it five. Miss: Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Yannick Carrasco, 61 min) 2:21PM 59 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Boooooo. No hat-trick for Lukaku - he's substituted for Maroune Fellaini. He did pick up a wee knock in the first half so that could just be a safety-first type deal. Tunisia take Sassi off for Sliti. That one seems odd, Sassi's been doing pretty well. 2:18PM 57 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Eden Hazard in his last 20 games for Belgium. ⚽️ 10 goals ��️ 12 assists Leaving his mark. #bel#worldcup#tun#cfcpic.twitter.com/QJrJfnpi4t— Kristof Terreur �� (@HLNinEngeland) June 23, 2018 Ooooooh that would have been amazing. Sassi controls the ball about 25/30 yards out, looks up and spots Courtois is a little off his line. He tries a volley and gets the dip right but the direction wrong. Wide of the goal. And Belgium are in again! Carrasco has miles of space... but his first touch is poor and takes him wide. His second touch is a bad pass inside and the chances has gone. 2:16PM 55 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Belgium can just sit deep and wait to counter now, saving a bit of energy and taking advantage of Tunisia's desperate attempts to get anything out of this. That's if they even have it in them - that goal by Hazard is a knock-out blow and there's not really any way back now. Expect Belgium substitutions soon. 2:12PM GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLLL! But it doesn't matter because Hazard has scored again! Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Eden Hazard, 51 min) Belgium have dropped back into a counter-attacking, deeper shape and Hazard spots a chance to run in behind, gets the ball over the top and controls superbly, finishing past the goalkeeper and two defenders. 2:12PM 50 mins - Belgium 3 Tunisia 1 Tunisia find space in behind Meunier, the cross is sent in from the left and Khazri very nearly gets on the end of it. He's offside anyway but that's a decent move. And there's another shot! Badri finds space in front of the Belgium defence (it's been there all game long) and fires a lot effort at goal. Courtois can save easily but Tunisia have identified where the danger areas are. 2:10PM 49 mins - Belgium 3 Tunisia 1 Well worked corner by Belgium. De Bruyne goes short, Witsel gives it back and De Bruyne can fire a low ball into the area. Alderweireld gets across his man at the front post but shoots over. You can see here that Belgium's average shape is a lopsided 3-3-4. Seems to be working! Average touch positions (47 min) 2:08PM 47 mins - Belgium 3 Tunisia 1 That's an 18 minute half-time interval we've had there. Longer than usual but like I said, it's hot so they probably need it. All of a sudden Khazri is through on goal and tries a backheel flick volley inside the area. Courtois saves... but how did he find so much space that early in the half? 2:07PM KICK OFF 2 The other thing that might guarantee goals is that Tunisia will tire in this half. They've already lost two players through injury and so only have one substitution left. And it's hot - about 30 degrees celsius apparently - so they're bound to be drained later on. Tunisia start the second half. 2:04PM And the good news is Tunisia have to go for it now. If they don't win - or at least get a point - they're out of the World Cup. Might as well give it a fair old whack then eh? And just think of the space they'll leave for Hazard, De Bruyne, Mertens and Lukaku to attack? There are goals in this game to come. 2 - Romelu Lukaku is the first player with 2+ goals in consecutive #WorldCup games since Diego Maradona in 1986 (v England & Belgium). Star. pic.twitter.com/24eR5IqK61— OptaJohan (@OptaJohan) June 23, 2018 2:02PM Tomorrow's big game Don't forget (how could you?!) that we'll have live coverage of England's game vs Panama tomorrow. If you fancied some reading on that game, here's my tactical preview of it. How England can get the job done against physical Panama 1:57PM 27 consecutive World Cup games without a 0-0 draw That's a new record! We are living in the time of the greatest (most fun) World Cup ever. #lovegoals #goals 1:54PM Lukaku level with Ronaldo for goals scored Romelu Lukaku of Belgium scores his team's third goal past Farouk Ben Mustapha Credit: GETTY IMAGES The battle is on! Both players have four goals each now and I, for one, am absolutely gutted I forgot to put Lukaku in my Fantasy Football team. I was doing so well too. Lukaku has been excellent today. Didier Drogba sounds proud of his protege: "He's someone who wants to learn and I'm happy giving him advice. He gets from Thierry Henry too. I think when you want to be the best you have to learn from the best." 1:51PM Clinical Belgium finishing Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal That's pretty impressive. 1:49PM HALF TIME Well that was excellent fun. Belgium looked like they were going to destroy Tunisia in the opening 20 minutes but there's just something off about Martinez's team and they have vulnerabilities. Neither team has looked reliable at the back and had Tunisia's attacking play been as good as Belgium's, this might well be a draw at half time. 1:48PM GOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLL! LUKAKU SCORES AGAIN! Belgium 3 - 1 Tunisia (Romelu Lukaku, 45 + 3 min) It's brilliant play by Meunier who finds himself high up the pitch to block a disastrous pass from Maaloul - the guy who's having a horror show of a performance - and he just waits for Lukaku's run before slipping the ball the other side of the centre-back. Lukaku dinks it over the goalkeeper. 1:47PM 45 mins+2 - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia pushing for an equaliser before half time now but Belgium are behind the ball blocking their path to goal. And now Hazard is away! He bursts past one man, has De Bruyne to his right in a three on four, De Bruyne just has to make the final pass into Lukaku at the back post and it's a goal! But again he gets his measurements all wrong. Chance gone. 1:44PM 45 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 And now Vertonghen is down with a little injury. No stretcher this time though, which is a relief. Belgium attack down the left now, Tunisia putting in some strong challenges but without much success. Eventually a pass to Hazard rolls out for a goal kick. 1:42PM 43 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Both teams have been busy in front of goal. The attacks are working well but both sets of defenders keep giving possession away... and Khaoui has just won a corner from Boyata. First Tunisian corner of the game. Khazri comes across to take. Courtois catches. 1:41PM 41 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia have been forced into another change. Ben Yousseff. S is going to have to come off and will be replaced by Ben Alouane, who plays for Leicester. And when I say plays for Leicester, I mean is employed by. He played once for Leicester last season. 1:39PM 39 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Belgium press Tunisia's left hand side in numbers, win the ball high up the pitch and Hazard passes inside, Lukaku goes for a one-two with De Bruyne... but the final ball is poor and goes straight through to the goalkeeper. De Bruyne really hasn't been very good in this tournament so far. At least not by his standards. His final pass has often been overhit or sent in the wrong direction. 1:37PM 37 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 "Time to get some liquids on board," says the BBC commentator. I think I might go out for a pint of liquid later tonight after the final game. And I'm enjoying a bottle of liquid while I watch this match. Love that liquid. 1:36PM 36 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Khazri has been excellent so far. He's got something of a free role for Tunisia and is dropping into space to pick up the ball and carry it forward at speed, and there's a lot of space ahead of Belgium's defence for him to move into. This is where Martinez's 3-2-5 shape (because that's what it is most of the time) becomes problematic. On this attack, Khazri attempts a reverse through-ball into the box but puts it behind for a goal kick. Credit: GETTY IMAGES Khazri has gone down with an ankle injury for a bit. 1:33PM 34 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Lukaku is just off the pitch at the moment receiving some treatment to his right ankle. Meanwhile, Tunisia are keeping up a sustained period of pressure... and KHAZRI SHOOTS FROM DISTANCE! Courtois's spilled it! Luckily for him he can grab the bouncing ball for a Tunisian can nick a cheap goal. Lukaku seems to be OK to come back on the pitch... and now Mustapha has dropped the ball from a cross! Belgium focusing their attacks down the right wing to target the left-back. He's having a nightmare. 1:31PM 32 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia are terrible in defence but look dangerous going forward. Belgium's back five drift too far from the midfield and gift space for Tunisia's midfielders to drift into. Sassi turns up on the edge of the box in the centre of the pitch after an attack down the right wing, but can't get his shot on target. 1:30PM 30 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia's defence are all over the place here. They're struggling to play out from the back and have handed a chance on the edge of their own area. Lukaku passes to Witsel, who should pass inside to hand Mertens a free run on goal but instead shoots and blasts over the bar. Attempt Saved: Belgium 2 - 1 Tunisia (Axel Witsel, 28 min) It's so far over in fact that the shot doesn't even register on our shot map graphic. 1:27PM 28 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 De Bruyne and Lukaku are away! The former plays in the latter but his first touch takes the ball too far away and gives the goalie a chance. The keeper comes off his line, blocks the next touch and Lukaku goes down but acknowledges while falling that it's not a foul. With a better first touch Lukaku had his second goal there. 1:25PM 26 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia are attacking quickly, Khazri skips past Meunier into the box but his rabona cross/shot is caught by Courtois. Belgium build from the back but are in far too flat a shape and lose the ball to Tunisia's pressing. 1:24PM 24 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Bronn is taken off on a stretcher :-( In his place is Naguez, who has apparently been linked with Newcastle and Crystal Palace in the past. 1:21PM 22 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Credit: GETTY IMAGES Alderweireld is now in the right half space close to the box and GOES FOR A SHOT! Dragged wide. Bronn has gone down off the ball after blocking Carrasco's pass. He might have done some serious damage to his knee - it just seems to jar as he connects with the ball. Poor guy. 1:20PM 20 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 And it should be 3-1! Belgium attack quickly, Hazard finds room in the right half space to attack, plays the ball wide right, it's crossed in and then Carrasco meets it in the box. His volley is saved but pushed towards Mertens, who passes rather than shooting and the chance goes begging. What a start! 1:18PM GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLL!!! But this time it's Tunisia! Belgium 2 - 1 Tunisia (Dylan Bronn, 18 min) They win a free-kick high up the pitch and Khazri crosses in to the centre of the box. Bronn gets ahead of his man and glances the header into the bottom corner, beyond the diving Courtois. 1:16PM GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAALLLLLLL!!!!!! And it's a hiding. Lukaku scores! Belgium 2 - 0 Tunisia (Romelu Lukaku, 16 min) Belgium have a two on two, which becomes a one vs one for Lukaku and the Tunisia centre-back, who plays him onto his left foot (...) and Lukaku finishes low and hard to the far post. Brilliant finish. 1:15PM 15 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 This is absolutely pathetic by Khazri. He chases Vertonghen for the ball into the box, Vertonghen's fingers tap him in the face and he goes FLYING to the floor, howling in pain. He should be forced to stand trial in front of his family for that one, shown the replay while his children go "daddy... why are you cheating? You said we shouldn't cheat" but it's too late. The damage is done. Anyway, Belgium are in here! Lukakuuuuuuuu 1:13PM 13 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 Hazard does some excellent work to shield the ball on the goal line and keep an attack alive but the ball has to go back and Tunisia survive. Belgium win the ball back, it's shifted out right, Lukaku dribbles down the wing and crosses low and HAZARD IS THERE! He just doesn't connect properly inside the box and the goalkeeper has an easy save. 1:10PM 11 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 Hazard and Khaoui are having a little sit down after colliding at high speed and winding each other. Both are absolutely fine to continue but that won't have been enjoyable. 1:09PM 9 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 How will Tunisia respond to that early set back? Khazri tries to play in Ben Youssef down the right but passes to Belgium's defence. Belgium have started really well here. 1:06PM GOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLL!!! Hazard steps up real cool and slots the ball bottom left. What a start by Belgium! Belgium 1 - 0 Tunisia (Eden Hazard, 6 min) 1:05PM PENALTY! Great move by Belgium! It's short passing, fluid movement and Hazard has the ball on the edge of the area. A little stepover and burst of pace later and the defender is beaten, wiping Hazard out. Tunisia want a VAR review because they think it's outside the area.... The penalty stands! Hazard will take. 1:03PM 4 mins - Belgium 0 Tunisia 0 Tunisia push high up the pitch, want a free-kick but don't get it and Belgium break quickly! Lukaku chases a ball through to the goalkeeper and is about a yard away from beating him to it! Ben Mustapha wins this battle. Belgium keep up the pressure and Meunier cuts inside onto his left foot to shoot... but the goalie saves easily. 1:01PM 2 mins - Belgium 0 Tunisia 0 Belgium win a free-kick inside 30 seconds about 35 yards out. This could be dangerous! De Bruyne curls it into the box... but basically just kicks the ball straight to the goalkeeper. A poor start by him. 1:00PM KICK_OFF.exe Here we go! How many VAR penalties will we get in this game? Only time will tell! Belgium, wearing yellow, get the game started. 12:57PM National anthems time The players are on the pitch and now is time for Gianni Infantino to act like he's as important as an actual prime minister or president. Look at him in his suit next to world leaders. Thinks he's so cool. Anyway, this song should get you pumped for the match: Tunisia give the anthem some proper welly and the manager even breaks into tears. They win the 'battle of the anthems' this time. But what about the battle of the soccerball? 12:52PM Zabaleta on Hazard "One of the toughest opponents I would say to play against. He's so good especially on the turn and the way he drives the ball forward, he can go past two, three players and is so composed. When you play against a player like Hazard he doesn't think twice, he just takes it." 12:51PM Why did Chelsea make such a big mistake with De Bruyne? Lampard: "I don't think they missed it. We were there at the time. There was an embarrassment of riches, Oscar etc. He was getting restless... of course he slipped the net." 12:45PM Belgium vs Tunisia tactics Frank Lampard has pointed out how Tunisia close down the man on the ball in numbers to try and limit their passing options. What ends up happening with that three man defence is someone is left spare on the opposite side of the pitch. A quick pass to that wing and the defender can carry the ball out from the back into heaps of space. Belgium should be able to exploit that. 12:42PM Dan Walker is too tall A little peek behind the curtain for you. If you were wondering why @AlexScott seems taller today, this might be why.... �� @BBCOne �� https://t.co/V1j729hyMh#worldcup#bbcworldcup#BEL#TUN#BELTUNpic.twitter.com/gKhiqwnX4p— Match of the Day (@BBCMOTD) June 23, 2018 12:42PM This BBC chat is tremendous We are talking about Belgium here but the BBC panel is looking at England's options for their game against Panama. Gary Lineker has revealed that he's watched Ruben Loftus-Cheek since he was 11 because he played in the same team as his son, saying "I told him that if this kid doesn't make it I'd be really surprised". Meanwhile, in the other game in Group G, our man Sam Wallace has written this on another player who struggled to cut it at Chelsea despite huge potential. Romelu Lukaku's goalscoring rate is already remarkable, but he is far from the finished article 12:30PM Frank Lampard I'm paraphrasing this a little bit because my hands aren't typing as quickly as I want to yet. I'm getting warmed up. Don't worry. Anyway, Lampard has revealed his long, arduous journey from a comfortable upper-middle class background. "I went to a private school in Essex so I feel bad compared to these guys! What I did have was a father who pushed me. "It was a real eye opener when Chelsea became a bit more cosmopolitan and Didier etc came in, we maybe didn't realise how easy we had it because they told us stories about back home and you see how lucky you are." 12:28PM Ex-pros on their journey Pablo Zabaleta "We have a dream to play in Europe to play in the greatest league in the world. And it's really tough because you have to leave your friends, your family. I was 21 and I cannot complain, I went to Barcelona to Espanyol! You have to be mature for this, be a tough person for those moments." 12:27PM But who is going to win this game? World Cup 2018 Simulator Single Game Find out here! 12:26PM Romelu Lukaku interview The BBC have an incredible interview with Romelu Lukaku on screen at the moment. He reveals things like when he realised his family was broke, how he used to share football boots with his dad and a really sad story about how his granddad died just days before he signed a professional football deal - the contract he kept telling his mum would change their lives once he got it. Good lad. He's come a long way. Didier Drogba is his hero too and is talking about meeting Lukaku. "He came up to me and said 'oh I know this goal, this minute you scored'. I remember it very well. He said 'I remember it because I was nine at that time'! I was 34. Like, man. Time flies." 12:10PM Belgium unchanged Belgium manager Roberto Martinez picks the same side that beat Panama, whilst Tunisia makes just two changes from the side that lost to England. Goalkeeper Farouk Ben Mustapha comes in for Mouez Hassen, while Naim Sliti makes way for Saîf-Eddine Khaoui. The teams are in! #BELTUN ������ pic.twitter.com/DifsYqztQq— FIFA World Cup �� (@FIFAWorldCup) June 23, 2018 11:57AM Location, location, location Nine days in and fans have had a chance to see every stadium in action. They're glorious aren't they? The red and white Spartak Stadium looks tailor made for a match between Belgium, who play in red today, and Tunisia, who play in white. World Cup 2018 stadium: Spartak Stadium 11:43AM And on the ninth day... A warm welcome to another day of World Cup football. It can be unusually cruel at times, the World Cup, as we've already seen Morocco, Egpyt, and fan favourites Peru crash out. After so much waiting, so much preparation, and so many miles travelled, it can all be over so quickly. Today, Tunisia must win to have any realistic chance of staying in Russia. Lose, and they put their hopes on Panama beating England. As any England supporter will tell you, there's no chance that'll happen - I'm not sure if you've heard but, football's coming home. Tunisia fans ahead of their side's second World Cup match against Belgium Credit: Sergei Karpukhin/Reuters A lot of the drama at this World Cup has had little to do with the football so far. VAR and leaked team sheets have dominated the headlines, but Russia is screaming out for someone to grab it by the horns and put in a display fit for a champion. It could certainly be star-studded Belgium, unbeaten in their past ten World Cup group-stage matches. This a golden generation to envy, as they're bursting with so much talent that even Mousa Dembele, brilliant this year (and any year) for Tottenham, didn't get in the starting lineup in their first match against Panama. Belgium won anyway, with all three goals in a 3-0 win coming in the second half where we saw glimpses of what this side is capable of. Kevin De Brunye, Eden Hazard and Romelu Lukaku started to replicate the kind of form we're used to seeing in the Premiership - frightening. They can seal qualification to the second round with a win today, and start fulfilling some of the potential their squad promises. Tunisia's defense will certainly have their work cut out for them, but expect a higher line than we saw them play against England as they're forced to go out and find a winner. Belgium fans ahead of their match against Tunisia Credit: Sergei Karpukhin/Reuters One thing you can count on at the Russia 2018 World Cup is that the fans will be up for it. They've absolutely stolen the show so far, so expect another great display of support for both sides at the Spartak Stadium.
Romelu Lukaku and Eden Hazard run riot against Tunisia as Belgium qualify for World Cup knock-out stages
How England can get the job done against physical Panama Group standings and permutations Jim White: Fantastic fans and where to find them at World Cup 2018 Belgium in 2018: a team who create many more goalscoring chances than they convert with a 40-goal centre-forward who is only 25 years old - and yet with qualification almost assured, Romelu Lukaku is not likely to be a concern for England yet. Lukaku came off injured as Roberto Martinez’s team pasted Tunisia under warm summer rain in Moscow but not before the striker had scored the 39th and 40th goals of his international career. Had he scored them in an England shirt, Belgium’s all-time top goalscorer would currently be tied for fifth place on the all-time list with Michael Owen, who had a similarly prolific early career, but even he did not score as quickly as Lukaku. The Manchester United striker now has 23 goals and four assists in his last 20 games for his country and for all those chances that slip away this is a team that creates them by the bucketload. When Lukaku bears down on goal, or runs in behind onto a pass from one of the many creatives in this team, you can never be sure what kind of finish is coming but - as with his club - he finishes enough to be a very significant figure at this World Cup finals. There were two more for Eden Hazard as Belgium dismantled Tunisia in a way that England could never manage when they won in injury time against the North Africans in their opening game, and much of it was impressive. Hazard flitted around the Tunisia area, drawing one of the competition’s most reckless fouls from Syam Benyoussef after just four minutes which gave him a penalty that set Belgium on their way. Before the end, when the substitute Michy Batshuayi buried one of his five chances, it was possible to have lost count of all the opportunities that Belgium had passed up to make this game the biggest-margin win of the tournament so far. They still managed to concede a second in the third minute of injury time and it was that moment, and others, which will give their opponents in the later rounds reason to think. Lukaku, who came off with an ankle ligament injury that Martinez said will be assessed, looks unlikely to be in the team that faces England in Kaliningrad on Thursday. Belgium will qualify for the second round if England avoid defeat to Panama and Martinez said if that is the case he will make “major changes” for Thursday, including Hazard who has a calf problem. test - do not delete Even so, both nations facing the difficult question of whether first or second would be more advantageous. Martinez said he would only try to win Thursday’s game, although the thought must have occurred to him that second could be better. “Football has a strange knack of punishing you when you don’t do things professionally,” he said. “What’s important is that every player will have a role to play, we will take it very cautiously and approach the game against England really well. We won’t be thinking of anything other than approaching that game really well.” The obvious weakness is at the centre of the three-man Belgium defence where Dedryk Boyata, the Celtic defender, is not quite of the standard of Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen either side of him. He was well protected in this game but better opposition may well feel they can pick away at that defence and Tunisia’s breakthrough came from a left-sided free-kick. Tunisia were set up to try to win the game, although they never looked like they would from the moment Hazard was taken out around the ankles in the opening stages. Their coach, Nabil Maaloul, suggested that his players never recovered from that first penalty, even though they were briefly at 2-1 thanks to Dylan Bronn’s header from a Wahbi Khazri free-kick, with the defender then injured and substituted, one of two Tunisians who did not last the first half. World Cup 2018 | The best of the Telegraph's coverage They simply did not have the quality to break down Belgium more than a couple of occasions, although there was a high-quality performance from Khazri who got his goal right at the last. A desperate time at Sunderland seemed no impediment to a very promising World Cup finals for the man now on loan at Rennes and he was skilful and explosive when on the ball. Martinez said that it was an “open game” which was an understatement given the freedom Tunisia afforded their opponents and some of the passing was breathtaking, with Dries Mertens and Hazard combining for the move that lead to the penalty. “You have two options,” Martinez said. “To play through the press you have really good opportunities, and if you don’t get through the press you will concede chances.” The reality is that with Kevin De Bruyne, Hazard and Mertens there was no chance of Belgium not finding a way through. Lukaku’s shot for his first was scuffed slightly but deceived Farouk Benmustapha. The Manchester United man did not always have his first touch tuned up and one would later run away from him before he made it 3-1 with a delicate dink over Benmustapha from a fine straight ball from Thomas Meunier through the Tunisia defence. Romelu Lukaku dinks the ball past Tunisia's goalkeeper Credit: getty images That was just before half-time and at 3-1 down Tunisia had lost all shape and most of their hope. The fourth came from Alderweireld in the right channel who struck it from his own half, a long hit that dropped over the defence and Hazard took on his chest, then once with his left foot to steer past Benmustapha and another with his right to finish. The first Tunisia goal had come from a set-piece and Martinez said that the high number of goals from dead-balls was a consequence of the video assistant referees spotting grappling in the area. This time Bronn made a run from deep in the area and was not picked up by the Belgian defence, glancing a fine header past Thibaut Courtois. On as a substitute for Hazard, Batshuayi conspired to miss a run of chances, including one cleared off the line, another against the bar and one that Benmustapha actually saved. He finally slid one in at the back post before Khazri got his from substitute Hamid Naguez’s cross. Belgium had made their point - they have the goals in them, although the game against England is not shaping up to be the high-stakes decider it might have been. WorldCup - newsletter promo - end of article 3:10PM What a World Cup it's been So many goals. I love VAR, it's made things so much more fair, the right decisions are being made and it has gone to show how many fouls go unpunished in games. Up next is South Korea vs Mexico and you can follow all the action for that one in our liveblog right here. I'd also recommend signing up for this so you can get Whatsapp updates sent to your phone. World Cup whatsapp promo 3:01PM England up next in Group G Who will want to top the group? There's a big chance both teams play reserve teams if England can beat Panama. Speaking of which... How England can get the job done against physical Panama 2:59PM Roberto Martinez post-match Today was a different game. Panama were very deep and structured, you have to give Tunisia a lot of credit for pressing high up and making it an open game and in that respect it made a game with lots of action in both boxes. That desire to find the solutions in each game, we had to suffer in spells but when we were in full flow going forward we were really sharp and have things we need to keep doing well. 2:58PM An entertaining game Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Belgium shots on goal Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Tunisia shots on goal Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal 2:56PM FULL TIME And that's it! Tunisia are pumped out of the World Cup by an excellent Belgium performance. There are clear weaknesses in Martinez's team but they're just so entertaining to watch that you kinda hope they keep them. Goals are guaranteed when Belgium play and they should have had more than the five they got. 2:54PM GOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLL Khazri has scored. THE COMEBACK IS ON! Belgium 5 - 2 Tunisia (Wahbi Khazri, 90 + 3 min) It's not. 2:54PM 90 mins +2 - Belgium 5 Tunisia 1 And Batshuayi should have two. Tunisia's defence have fallen apart, understandably, and Batshuayi runs at them, cuts inside onto his left foot and then bends a shot wide of the post with the goalkeeper beaten. Miss: Belgium 5 - 1 Tunisia (Michy Batshuayi, 90 + 2 min) 2:51PM GOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLL! I was wrong! Batshuayi has his goal! It's an assist for Tielemans too! He swings a chipped ball from the right and Batshuayi's movement is superb, staying off the shoulder of his man and peeling away at the last second to meet the cross and finish into the bottom corner. 2:49PM 88 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Credit: REUTERS It doesn't look possible that Batshuayi could miss in this photo. But he did. He looks so driven to score in this game but you'd think the chances are gone now. 2:47PM 86 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Here comes Belgium's final substitute and it's Football Manager wonderkid Youri Tielemans. He was a captain at Anderlecht at (I think) 17 years old and is a central midfielder who can either hold the ball or attack. 2:45PM 84 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Since Fellaini has come on next to Witsel, De Bruyne has been allowed to get forward when he wants to and he's tearing Tunisia apart in the final third. He's just turned up in space wide left but not been able to take the ball down, having created the previous few chances for Belgium. 2:43PM 82 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 It's just not happening for Batshuayi here. De Bruyne gets into the box and passes across the area, Batshuayi meets it on the volley and forces a fantastic save from the goalkeeper. It's just one of those games for him. He could have had three goals by now - Lukaku could have secured the Golden Boot by now! 2:42PM 80 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Oh god that's an awful miss. Belgium's forward players are keen still and think they might some fun in front of goal. De Bruyne keeps a move going, Carrasco gets a hit at goal and then Batshuayi hits the bar from less than six yards. 2:39PM 77 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 BATSHUAYI IS IN! ROUND THE KEEPER! And it's blocked on the line. Great run by the striker and a fantastic take but his finish just isn't good enough to beat the covering defender. Needed more power there. Attempt Saved: Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Michy Batshuayi, 76 min) "It's really poor technique," says Phil Neville. 2:37PM 75 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 It's probably fair to say that some of the spark has gone out of this game. Belgium have gone into cruise control. But Batshuayi is keen to get involved and sprints in behind the defence... the goalkeeper comes five/10 yards out of his box and slides to save, taking the ball with his chest. Very nicely done indeed. 2:34PM 72 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Tunisia must know they're doomed here but they're still having a go. Courtois is the busier of the two goalkeepers at the moment. Vertonghen has just had Sliti header the side of his face, which looks pretty sore. He's OK to continue. 2:31PM 70 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Sliti wins a free-kick from Boyata and Khazri is sizing it up. He crosses... but it's cleared and then Khaoui blooters an effort miles over. Lots of shots over the bar in this World Cup. Is it the ball? Bad finishing? Over-excitement? 2:29PM 68 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 No hat-trick for Hazard either. Batshuayi replaces him. Seems like a sensible replacement by Martinez. 2:28PM 66 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Credit: REUTERS Sliti hits a snapshot at goal and wants a penalty because the ball pings off Alderweireld's elbow but it's never a penalty in a million years. Tunisia are probing the final third just now, looking for a chance to shoot... and Badri finds one! It's low and Courtois saves well. 2:26PM 64 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 The rain is pouring down now onto the pitch but it's still bright sunshine. I have nothing much else to say about the weather. Hazard tries a shot from 25 yards but puts it miles over. Miss: Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Eden Hazard, 64 min) 2:23PM 62 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Fellaini has dropped into midfield and De Bruyne has gone into the right inside-forward role, with Mertens taking the central striker position. He does that for Napoli and it's not a downgrade on Lukaku by any means. Tunisia get up the pitch and Belgium's defenders panic to get it clear... then Belgium get up the pitch and Carrasco has the ball on the edge of the box. He sets himself and then bends one towards the top corner. Inches away from making it five. Miss: Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Yannick Carrasco, 61 min) 2:21PM 59 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Boooooo. No hat-trick for Lukaku - he's substituted for Maroune Fellaini. He did pick up a wee knock in the first half so that could just be a safety-first type deal. Tunisia take Sassi off for Sliti. That one seems odd, Sassi's been doing pretty well. 2:18PM 57 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Eden Hazard in his last 20 games for Belgium. ⚽️ 10 goals ��️ 12 assists Leaving his mark. #bel#worldcup#tun#cfcpic.twitter.com/QJrJfnpi4t— Kristof Terreur �� (@HLNinEngeland) June 23, 2018 Ooooooh that would have been amazing. Sassi controls the ball about 25/30 yards out, looks up and spots Courtois is a little off his line. He tries a volley and gets the dip right but the direction wrong. Wide of the goal. And Belgium are in again! Carrasco has miles of space... but his first touch is poor and takes him wide. His second touch is a bad pass inside and the chances has gone. 2:16PM 55 mins - Belgium 4 Tunisia 1 Belgium can just sit deep and wait to counter now, saving a bit of energy and taking advantage of Tunisia's desperate attempts to get anything out of this. That's if they even have it in them - that goal by Hazard is a knock-out blow and there's not really any way back now. Expect Belgium substitutions soon. 2:12PM GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLLL! But it doesn't matter because Hazard has scored again! Belgium 4 - 1 Tunisia (Eden Hazard, 51 min) Belgium have dropped back into a counter-attacking, deeper shape and Hazard spots a chance to run in behind, gets the ball over the top and controls superbly, finishing past the goalkeeper and two defenders. 2:12PM 50 mins - Belgium 3 Tunisia 1 Tunisia find space in behind Meunier, the cross is sent in from the left and Khazri very nearly gets on the end of it. He's offside anyway but that's a decent move. And there's another shot! Badri finds space in front of the Belgium defence (it's been there all game long) and fires a lot effort at goal. Courtois can save easily but Tunisia have identified where the danger areas are. 2:10PM 49 mins - Belgium 3 Tunisia 1 Well worked corner by Belgium. De Bruyne goes short, Witsel gives it back and De Bruyne can fire a low ball into the area. Alderweireld gets across his man at the front post but shoots over. You can see here that Belgium's average shape is a lopsided 3-3-4. Seems to be working! Average touch positions (47 min) 2:08PM 47 mins - Belgium 3 Tunisia 1 That's an 18 minute half-time interval we've had there. Longer than usual but like I said, it's hot so they probably need it. All of a sudden Khazri is through on goal and tries a backheel flick volley inside the area. Courtois saves... but how did he find so much space that early in the half? 2:07PM KICK OFF 2 The other thing that might guarantee goals is that Tunisia will tire in this half. They've already lost two players through injury and so only have one substitution left. And it's hot - about 30 degrees celsius apparently - so they're bound to be drained later on. Tunisia start the second half. 2:04PM And the good news is Tunisia have to go for it now. If they don't win - or at least get a point - they're out of the World Cup. Might as well give it a fair old whack then eh? And just think of the space they'll leave for Hazard, De Bruyne, Mertens and Lukaku to attack? There are goals in this game to come. 2 - Romelu Lukaku is the first player with 2+ goals in consecutive #WorldCup games since Diego Maradona in 1986 (v England & Belgium). Star. pic.twitter.com/24eR5IqK61— OptaJohan (@OptaJohan) June 23, 2018 2:02PM Tomorrow's big game Don't forget (how could you?!) that we'll have live coverage of England's game vs Panama tomorrow. If you fancied some reading on that game, here's my tactical preview of it. How England can get the job done against physical Panama 1:57PM 27 consecutive World Cup games without a 0-0 draw That's a new record! We are living in the time of the greatest (most fun) World Cup ever. #lovegoals #goals 1:54PM Lukaku level with Ronaldo for goals scored Romelu Lukaku of Belgium scores his team's third goal past Farouk Ben Mustapha Credit: GETTY IMAGES The battle is on! Both players have four goals each now and I, for one, am absolutely gutted I forgot to put Lukaku in my Fantasy Football team. I was doing so well too. Lukaku has been excellent today. Didier Drogba sounds proud of his protege: "He's someone who wants to learn and I'm happy giving him advice. He gets from Thierry Henry too. I think when you want to be the best you have to learn from the best." 1:51PM Clinical Belgium finishing Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal That's pretty impressive. 1:49PM HALF TIME Well that was excellent fun. Belgium looked like they were going to destroy Tunisia in the opening 20 minutes but there's just something off about Martinez's team and they have vulnerabilities. Neither team has looked reliable at the back and had Tunisia's attacking play been as good as Belgium's, this might well be a draw at half time. 1:48PM GOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLL! LUKAKU SCORES AGAIN! Belgium 3 - 1 Tunisia (Romelu Lukaku, 45 + 3 min) It's brilliant play by Meunier who finds himself high up the pitch to block a disastrous pass from Maaloul - the guy who's having a horror show of a performance - and he just waits for Lukaku's run before slipping the ball the other side of the centre-back. Lukaku dinks it over the goalkeeper. 1:47PM 45 mins+2 - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia pushing for an equaliser before half time now but Belgium are behind the ball blocking their path to goal. And now Hazard is away! He bursts past one man, has De Bruyne to his right in a three on four, De Bruyne just has to make the final pass into Lukaku at the back post and it's a goal! But again he gets his measurements all wrong. Chance gone. 1:44PM 45 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 And now Vertonghen is down with a little injury. No stretcher this time though, which is a relief. Belgium attack down the left now, Tunisia putting in some strong challenges but without much success. Eventually a pass to Hazard rolls out for a goal kick. 1:42PM 43 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Belgium vs Tunisia shots on goal Both teams have been busy in front of goal. The attacks are working well but both sets of defenders keep giving possession away... and Khaoui has just won a corner from Boyata. First Tunisian corner of the game. Khazri comes across to take. Courtois catches. 1:41PM 41 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia have been forced into another change. Ben Yousseff. S is going to have to come off and will be replaced by Ben Alouane, who plays for Leicester. And when I say plays for Leicester, I mean is employed by. He played once for Leicester last season. 1:39PM 39 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Belgium press Tunisia's left hand side in numbers, win the ball high up the pitch and Hazard passes inside, Lukaku goes for a one-two with De Bruyne... but the final ball is poor and goes straight through to the goalkeeper. De Bruyne really hasn't been very good in this tournament so far. At least not by his standards. His final pass has often been overhit or sent in the wrong direction. 1:37PM 37 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 "Time to get some liquids on board," says the BBC commentator. I think I might go out for a pint of liquid later tonight after the final game. And I'm enjoying a bottle of liquid while I watch this match. Love that liquid. 1:36PM 36 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Khazri has been excellent so far. He's got something of a free role for Tunisia and is dropping into space to pick up the ball and carry it forward at speed, and there's a lot of space ahead of Belgium's defence for him to move into. This is where Martinez's 3-2-5 shape (because that's what it is most of the time) becomes problematic. On this attack, Khazri attempts a reverse through-ball into the box but puts it behind for a goal kick. Credit: GETTY IMAGES Khazri has gone down with an ankle injury for a bit. 1:33PM 34 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Lukaku is just off the pitch at the moment receiving some treatment to his right ankle. Meanwhile, Tunisia are keeping up a sustained period of pressure... and KHAZRI SHOOTS FROM DISTANCE! Courtois's spilled it! Luckily for him he can grab the bouncing ball for a Tunisian can nick a cheap goal. Lukaku seems to be OK to come back on the pitch... and now Mustapha has dropped the ball from a cross! Belgium focusing their attacks down the right wing to target the left-back. He's having a nightmare. 1:31PM 32 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia are terrible in defence but look dangerous going forward. Belgium's back five drift too far from the midfield and gift space for Tunisia's midfielders to drift into. Sassi turns up on the edge of the box in the centre of the pitch after an attack down the right wing, but can't get his shot on target. 1:30PM 30 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia's defence are all over the place here. They're struggling to play out from the back and have handed a chance on the edge of their own area. Lukaku passes to Witsel, who should pass inside to hand Mertens a free run on goal but instead shoots and blasts over the bar. Attempt Saved: Belgium 2 - 1 Tunisia (Axel Witsel, 28 min) It's so far over in fact that the shot doesn't even register on our shot map graphic. 1:27PM 28 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 De Bruyne and Lukaku are away! The former plays in the latter but his first touch takes the ball too far away and gives the goalie a chance. The keeper comes off his line, blocks the next touch and Lukaku goes down but acknowledges while falling that it's not a foul. With a better first touch Lukaku had his second goal there. 1:25PM 26 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Tunisia are attacking quickly, Khazri skips past Meunier into the box but his rabona cross/shot is caught by Courtois. Belgium build from the back but are in far too flat a shape and lose the ball to Tunisia's pressing. 1:24PM 24 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Bronn is taken off on a stretcher :-( In his place is Naguez, who has apparently been linked with Newcastle and Crystal Palace in the past. 1:21PM 22 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 Credit: GETTY IMAGES Alderweireld is now in the right half space close to the box and GOES FOR A SHOT! Dragged wide. Bronn has gone down off the ball after blocking Carrasco's pass. He might have done some serious damage to his knee - it just seems to jar as he connects with the ball. Poor guy. 1:20PM 20 mins - Belgium 2 Tunisia 1 And it should be 3-1! Belgium attack quickly, Hazard finds room in the right half space to attack, plays the ball wide right, it's crossed in and then Carrasco meets it in the box. His volley is saved but pushed towards Mertens, who passes rather than shooting and the chance goes begging. What a start! 1:18PM GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLL!!! But this time it's Tunisia! Belgium 2 - 1 Tunisia (Dylan Bronn, 18 min) They win a free-kick high up the pitch and Khazri crosses in to the centre of the box. Bronn gets ahead of his man and glances the header into the bottom corner, beyond the diving Courtois. 1:16PM GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAALLLLLLL!!!!!! And it's a hiding. Lukaku scores! Belgium 2 - 0 Tunisia (Romelu Lukaku, 16 min) Belgium have a two on two, which becomes a one vs one for Lukaku and the Tunisia centre-back, who plays him onto his left foot (...) and Lukaku finishes low and hard to the far post. Brilliant finish. 1:15PM 15 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 This is absolutely pathetic by Khazri. He chases Vertonghen for the ball into the box, Vertonghen's fingers tap him in the face and he goes FLYING to the floor, howling in pain. He should be forced to stand trial in front of his family for that one, shown the replay while his children go "daddy... why are you cheating? You said we shouldn't cheat" but it's too late. The damage is done. Anyway, Belgium are in here! Lukakuuuuuuuu 1:13PM 13 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 Hazard does some excellent work to shield the ball on the goal line and keep an attack alive but the ball has to go back and Tunisia survive. Belgium win the ball back, it's shifted out right, Lukaku dribbles down the wing and crosses low and HAZARD IS THERE! He just doesn't connect properly inside the box and the goalkeeper has an easy save. 1:10PM 11 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 Hazard and Khaoui are having a little sit down after colliding at high speed and winding each other. Both are absolutely fine to continue but that won't have been enjoyable. 1:09PM 9 mins - Belgium 1 Tunisia 0 How will Tunisia respond to that early set back? Khazri tries to play in Ben Youssef down the right but passes to Belgium's defence. Belgium have started really well here. 1:06PM GOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLL!!! Hazard steps up real cool and slots the ball bottom left. What a start by Belgium! Belgium 1 - 0 Tunisia (Eden Hazard, 6 min) 1:05PM PENALTY! Great move by Belgium! It's short passing, fluid movement and Hazard has the ball on the edge of the area. A little stepover and burst of pace later and the defender is beaten, wiping Hazard out. Tunisia want a VAR review because they think it's outside the area.... The penalty stands! Hazard will take. 1:03PM 4 mins - Belgium 0 Tunisia 0 Tunisia push high up the pitch, want a free-kick but don't get it and Belgium break quickly! Lukaku chases a ball through to the goalkeeper and is about a yard away from beating him to it! Ben Mustapha wins this battle. Belgium keep up the pressure and Meunier cuts inside onto his left foot to shoot... but the goalie saves easily. 1:01PM 2 mins - Belgium 0 Tunisia 0 Belgium win a free-kick inside 30 seconds about 35 yards out. This could be dangerous! De Bruyne curls it into the box... but basically just kicks the ball straight to the goalkeeper. A poor start by him. 1:00PM KICK_OFF.exe Here we go! How many VAR penalties will we get in this game? Only time will tell! Belgium, wearing yellow, get the game started. 12:57PM National anthems time The players are on the pitch and now is time for Gianni Infantino to act like he's as important as an actual prime minister or president. Look at him in his suit next to world leaders. Thinks he's so cool. Anyway, this song should get you pumped for the match: Tunisia give the anthem some proper welly and the manager even breaks into tears. They win the 'battle of the anthems' this time. But what about the battle of the soccerball? 12:52PM Zabaleta on Hazard "One of the toughest opponents I would say to play against. He's so good especially on the turn and the way he drives the ball forward, he can go past two, three players and is so composed. When you play against a player like Hazard he doesn't think twice, he just takes it." 12:51PM Why did Chelsea make such a big mistake with De Bruyne? Lampard: "I don't think they missed it. We were there at the time. There was an embarrassment of riches, Oscar etc. He was getting restless... of course he slipped the net." 12:45PM Belgium vs Tunisia tactics Frank Lampard has pointed out how Tunisia close down the man on the ball in numbers to try and limit their passing options. What ends up happening with that three man defence is someone is left spare on the opposite side of the pitch. A quick pass to that wing and the defender can carry the ball out from the back into heaps of space. Belgium should be able to exploit that. 12:42PM Dan Walker is too tall A little peek behind the curtain for you. If you were wondering why @AlexScott seems taller today, this might be why.... �� @BBCOne �� https://t.co/V1j729hyMh#worldcup#bbcworldcup#BEL#TUN#BELTUNpic.twitter.com/gKhiqwnX4p— Match of the Day (@BBCMOTD) June 23, 2018 12:42PM This BBC chat is tremendous We are talking about Belgium here but the BBC panel is looking at England's options for their game against Panama. Gary Lineker has revealed that he's watched Ruben Loftus-Cheek since he was 11 because he played in the same team as his son, saying "I told him that if this kid doesn't make it I'd be really surprised". Meanwhile, in the other game in Group G, our man Sam Wallace has written this on another player who struggled to cut it at Chelsea despite huge potential. Romelu Lukaku's goalscoring rate is already remarkable, but he is far from the finished article 12:30PM Frank Lampard I'm paraphrasing this a little bit because my hands aren't typing as quickly as I want to yet. I'm getting warmed up. Don't worry. Anyway, Lampard has revealed his long, arduous journey from a comfortable upper-middle class background. "I went to a private school in Essex so I feel bad compared to these guys! What I did have was a father who pushed me. "It was a real eye opener when Chelsea became a bit more cosmopolitan and Didier etc came in, we maybe didn't realise how easy we had it because they told us stories about back home and you see how lucky you are." 12:28PM Ex-pros on their journey Pablo Zabaleta "We have a dream to play in Europe to play in the greatest league in the world. And it's really tough because you have to leave your friends, your family. I was 21 and I cannot complain, I went to Barcelona to Espanyol! You have to be mature for this, be a tough person for those moments." 12:27PM But who is going to win this game? World Cup 2018 Simulator Single Game Find out here! 12:26PM Romelu Lukaku interview The BBC have an incredible interview with Romelu Lukaku on screen at the moment. He reveals things like when he realised his family was broke, how he used to share football boots with his dad and a really sad story about how his granddad died just days before he signed a professional football deal - the contract he kept telling his mum would change their lives once he got it. Good lad. He's come a long way. Didier Drogba is his hero too and is talking about meeting Lukaku. "He came up to me and said 'oh I know this goal, this minute you scored'. I remember it very well. He said 'I remember it because I was nine at that time'! I was 34. Like, man. Time flies." 12:10PM Belgium unchanged Belgium manager Roberto Martinez picks the same side that beat Panama, whilst Tunisia makes just two changes from the side that lost to England. Goalkeeper Farouk Ben Mustapha comes in for Mouez Hassen, while Naim Sliti makes way for Saîf-Eddine Khaoui. The teams are in! #BELTUN ������ pic.twitter.com/DifsYqztQq— FIFA World Cup �� (@FIFAWorldCup) June 23, 2018 11:57AM Location, location, location Nine days in and fans have had a chance to see every stadium in action. They're glorious aren't they? The red and white Spartak Stadium looks tailor made for a match between Belgium, who play in red today, and Tunisia, who play in white. World Cup 2018 stadium: Spartak Stadium 11:43AM And on the ninth day... A warm welcome to another day of World Cup football. It can be unusually cruel at times, the World Cup, as we've already seen Morocco, Egpyt, and fan favourites Peru crash out. After so much waiting, so much preparation, and so many miles travelled, it can all be over so quickly. Today, Tunisia must win to have any realistic chance of staying in Russia. Lose, and they put their hopes on Panama beating England. As any England supporter will tell you, there's no chance that'll happen - I'm not sure if you've heard but, football's coming home. Tunisia fans ahead of their side's second World Cup match against Belgium Credit: Sergei Karpukhin/Reuters A lot of the drama at this World Cup has had little to do with the football so far. VAR and leaked team sheets have dominated the headlines, but Russia is screaming out for someone to grab it by the horns and put in a display fit for a champion. It could certainly be star-studded Belgium, unbeaten in their past ten World Cup group-stage matches. This a golden generation to envy, as they're bursting with so much talent that even Mousa Dembele, brilliant this year (and any year) for Tottenham, didn't get in the starting lineup in their first match against Panama. Belgium won anyway, with all three goals in a 3-0 win coming in the second half where we saw glimpses of what this side is capable of. Kevin De Brunye, Eden Hazard and Romelu Lukaku started to replicate the kind of form we're used to seeing in the Premiership - frightening. They can seal qualification to the second round with a win today, and start fulfilling some of the potential their squad promises. Tunisia's defense will certainly have their work cut out for them, but expect a higher line than we saw them play against England as they're forced to go out and find a winner. Belgium fans ahead of their match against Tunisia Credit: Sergei Karpukhin/Reuters One thing you can count on at the Russia 2018 World Cup is that the fans will be up for it. They've absolutely stolen the show so far, so expect another great display of support for both sides at the Spartak Stadium.
​​Gerard Piqué siempre ha sido un jugador de lo más divertido a la vez que polémico. Hoy en día, el defensa blaugrana sigue explorando su faceta como entrevistador. Y esta vez, el histórico central catalán se sentó a charlar con un jugador inesperado: El ex madridista James Rodríguez, futbolista colombiano al que enfrentó durante tres temporadas en los Clásicos de España. Actualmente, milita en la Bundesliga con el Bayern de Múnich. La entrevista fue un intercambio ameno y tranquilo,...
El ex del Real Madrid al que Piqué invitó a fichar por el Barcelona
​​Gerard Piqué siempre ha sido un jugador de lo más divertido a la vez que polémico. Hoy en día, el defensa blaugrana sigue explorando su faceta como entrevistador. Y esta vez, el histórico central catalán se sentó a charlar con un jugador inesperado: El ex madridista James Rodríguez, futbolista colombiano al que enfrentó durante tres temporadas en los Clásicos de España. Actualmente, milita en la Bundesliga con el Bayern de Múnich. La entrevista fue un intercambio ameno y tranquilo,...
​​Gerard Piqué siempre ha sido un jugador de lo más divertido a la vez que polémico. Hoy en día, el defensa blaugrana sigue explorando su faceta como entrevistador. Y esta vez, el histórico central catalán se sentó a charlar con un jugador inesperado: El ex madridista James Rodríguez, futbolista colombiano al que enfrentó durante tres temporadas en los Clásicos de España. Actualmente, milita en la Bundesliga con el Bayern de Múnich. La entrevista fue un intercambio ameno y tranquilo,...
El ex del Real Madrid al que Piqué invitó a fichar por el Barcelona
​​Gerard Piqué siempre ha sido un jugador de lo más divertido a la vez que polémico. Hoy en día, el defensa blaugrana sigue explorando su faceta como entrevistador. Y esta vez, el histórico central catalán se sentó a charlar con un jugador inesperado: El ex madridista James Rodríguez, futbolista colombiano al que enfrentó durante tres temporadas en los Clásicos de España. Actualmente, milita en la Bundesliga con el Bayern de Múnich. La entrevista fue un intercambio ameno y tranquilo,...
Noah, youtuber de 23 años de Barcelona, ha protagonizado uno de los momentos
Protagoniza el momento más ¿sexi? y surrealista que se recuerda en 'First Dates' y la cosa acaba de la forma más inesperada
Noah, youtuber de 23 años de Barcelona, ha protagonizado uno de los momentos
Noah, youtuber de 23 años de Barcelona, ha protagonizado uno de los momentos
Protagoniza el momento más ¿sexi? y surrealista que se recuerda en 'First Dates' y la cosa acaba de la forma más inesperada
Noah, youtuber de 23 años de Barcelona, ha protagonizado uno de los momentos
Noah, youtuber de 23 años de Barcelona, ha protagonizado uno de los momentos
Protagoniza el momento más ¿sexi? y surrealista que se recuerda en 'First Dates' y la cosa acaba de la forma más inesperada
Noah, youtuber de 23 años de Barcelona, ha protagonizado uno de los momentos
Noah, youtuber de 23 años de Barcelona, ha protagonizado uno de los momentos
Protagoniza el momento más ¿sexi? y surrealista que se recuerda en 'First Dates' y la cosa acaba de la forma más inesperada
Noah, youtuber de 23 años de Barcelona, ha protagonizado uno de los momentos
Group standings and permutations You are the VAR: Think you can do better than the World Cup referees? Test yourself here Get Telegraph Football WhatsApp for in-match analysis and talking points throughout the World Cup Jim White: Fantastic fans and where to find them at World Cup 2018 ​There have been so many times when England were such a tactically flat, stressed-out bunch that they could squeeze the joy out of battering even the meekest opposition, so against Panama you had to rub your eyes at the general levels of fun being had. This was England as we rarely see them, the game won in the first half, a place in the second round with a match to spare and a general feeling of abandon that anything could happen. Harry Kane notched only the third World Cup hat-trick in English history, and then there was an unfamiliar competence observed on the basics of the game, especially two set-piece goals created for John Stones that demonstrated actual planning. Everything that could go right for England did although they never felt lucky and they chuckled at Kane’s third that ricocheted off his heel while he was looking the other way. Somewhere in the Moscow outskirts one could only guess at the grand disdain Cristiano Ronaldo will have felt at being supplanted as the tournament’s top scorer in that manner. It hardly needs saying that this was England’s biggest World Cup win but it was also World Cup football as enjoyment rather than the usual torture. Afterwards, Gareth Southgate conjured up the modern English pastoral when he said he was glad to have delivered goals for a public watching at home on a “warm Sunday afternoon”. A great vision of barbecues ablaze, televisions repositioned and six times a boozy roar across the back gardens. Out in the scorching mid-afternoon of Nizhny Novgorod, an industrial goliath east of Moscow, England looked strangely at ease in a foreign land: with the heat, with the pressure of being the favourites, with the rhythm of tournament football. They once got to half-time against Andorra in Barcelona in a Euro 2008 qualifier without sticking a goal past the part-timers of the ski resort nation and yet this time they had buried the first within nine minutes. Later the Panama coach would excuse his players their tactical naivety and their relentless corner routine grappling by proclaiming that the nation had made history with their first World Cup goal from substitute Felipe Badoy. “We are virgins!” Hernan Dario Gomez said. “We have been born before the due date! We are debutants. We have to celebrate what we have done.” Yet the team ranked 55th in the world edged out the United States on their way to qualification. What mattered was the performance was good from England, and the greediness with which they helped themselves to five before half-time showed a little frission of pleasure at being the bullies for once. Southgate called it “ruthlessness” and there was something very smart about the way in which Stones swept through the pack unmarked to head in the first while Panama stuck doggedly to their gameplan of trying to spear-tackle Harry Maguire at every dead ball situation. England permutations | Who could they face in knockout stages? Southgate credited his strikers’ coach Allan Russell for the finessing of set-pieces and the Scot has done good work, especially with the fourth that was worked back and forth across the box before Stones nodded in his second. Jesse Lingard won the penalty for Kane’s first, and curled in the third after an exchange with Raheem Sterling. Kane won his second penalty himself just before half-time with Anibal Godoy trying to coerce him in the penalty area with all the subtlety of a new pub landlord breaking up his first fight. Both Kane penalties were dispatched with a viciousness that spoke of a confidence in that particular art - which is also unusual when it comes to England. They went in five goals up. The Panama captain Roman Torres, a big man who also nurtured a Maguire preoccupation in the first half, beckoned his team-mates together for a chat on the pitch. There was a conversation, although sadly not the full Phil Brown routine. Kieran Trippier departed in the second half with a minor strain but he had done enough to underline his new pre-eminence from dead balls. It was he who picked out Stones from a corner for the first, and Trippier then found Lingard before he was fouled for the first of two penalties. Southgate made a place for his understudy right-back in this new formation and Trippier’s range of delivery ticks all the boxes. The last group game against Belgium in Kaliningrad on Thursday, with its full complement of England fans in the Russian exclave on the Gulf of Finland will not be the decisive match it could have been. Southgate said later his preoccupation was “squad harmony” and giving chances to those who have not played much, which will include the three unused outfield players, Gary Cahill, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Phil Jones. There is the tricky question of whether first or second place in Group G will open up the better route for England, identically matched with Belgium and in first place by virtue of disciplinary record. With Romelu Lukaku nursing an injury and Kane potentially rested it could yet be a strange hand of poker that both managers play. England have been here before, hedging their bets on the last group game and came out the worse for it. That was at Euro 2016 when the momentum of a win over Wales in the second group game was squandered when Roy Hodgson rested key players for the final game against Slovakia. England were pitched into a fateful second round tie against Iceland rather than Northern Ireland and the rest is so many bad memories. Both Southgate and Roberto Martinez have said they want to win the game although we wait to see. Kane’s third cannoned off him, a Ruben Loftus-Cheek shot heading in another direction, and Southgate immediately replaced him with Jamie Vardy. Fabian Delph played his first minutes in place of Lingard and Trippier was later substituted for Danny Rose. This is the shape of the England team that is likely to play against Belgium. The last time England showed anything like this promise in a tournament, at Euro 2004, it was the third group game that they lost Rooney to injury so perhaps caution will be Southgate’s guiding light. Even so, they lit a fuse against lowly Panama. Unlike so many of their predecessors at tournaments, England feel part of this one - scoring goals, forcing others to notice them. When he took the job on a permanent basis, Southgate recalled watching a highlights reel of the 2014 World Cup at a Fifa draw and noticing with horror that not once did it feature England, so meagre had their efforts been at that tournament. Already England are on the highlights reel for 2018. They have scored eight goals in two games and have the tournament’s current top striker. Having hit this kind of pace it would be a shame to see it peter out against Belgium before they embark on the second round. They might not have the best squad at the tournament but they have some form at last and the confidence flowing from that is of the kind we have not seen in years. 3:57PM Well, this is something Even if Loftus-Cheek's pass was really a shot: 25 - There were 25 uninterrupted passes played by England before their 6th goal today; the longest sequence for a World Cup goal since 1966 & one more pass than Esteban Cambiasso's goal for Argentina v Serbia in 2006 (24). Fortunate.#Eng#EngPan#WorldCuppic.twitter.com/pBnHr1EEKr— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) June 24, 2018 3:55PM How they stand 3:46PM The captain speaks again Professional. Clinical. Bring on Belgium and the knockout rounds. �� #ThreeLions#WorldCuppic.twitter.com/QXSsHNoejq— Harry Kane (@HKane) June 24, 2018 3:24PM Gareth Southgate speaks "I didn’t like the performance. Well, I didn’t like the start, and I didn’t like the goal at the end, but I guess the bits in the middle were pretty good. I think we were a little bit anxious at the beginning. We played some really good stuff after 35, 40 minutes. "The second half is difficult. We talked about the importance of one more goal to be top of the group, which is why the goal at the end is disappointing. But it’s really rewarding to see how well they’re playing, and how much they’re enjoying their football. "Big moments for Jess Lingard today, of course great for the captain to get his hat-trick which made it easier to take him off. [Was he OK about coming off?] Probably not but I've got a group to look after and there were some heavy tackles flyinhg about. "We said before the game, no more yellow cards. That was a key part of the second half, definitely. "We want to keep momentum, so we’ll have to have a think about the team we want to put out [against Belgium]. There’s an opportunity as well that players that need a match, but also we want to keep winning football matches. It’s a nice decision to have." 3:21PM Breaking news about England's anthem for the Belgium game It's been changed to this for Messrs Walker, Stones, Maguire, Rose, Delph and Vardy: 3:18PM Ruben Loftus-Cheek has a word "To win 6-1 in the World Cup is fantastic. I’m delighted with that. I think we want to put on a good performance for the fans, but also for ourselves. "For such a young captain [Harry is] so vocal. I think everyone respects him massively, what he’s done for Tottenham and bringing it in for England. Ruben Loftus-Cheek made his first World Cup start and it was his shot that Harry Kane deflected in for his hat-trick Credit: AP Photo/Alastair Grant "We work on set pieces a lot, and to see it coming good in the games when we prepare so much for it. It’s such a big factor in games, we put in so much work and we’re glad that it keeps coming out on the pitch." 3:14PM Ashley Young takes the mic "The togetherness I’ve seen is incredible. Off the pitch everybody mixes with each other. Everybody wants the ball, nobody shies away from the ball. We’ve got to keep on doing that, keep showing our confidence and keep playing the way we have. The start of something good Credit: JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images "We’ve just got to keep our feet on the ground and keep working hard in training. This could be the start of something good. 3:10PM Relive the match in a minute 3:09PM Here are Ben Rumsby's ratings England vs Panama player ratings 3:08PM Jesse Lingard speaks I thrive in that role. It's great to be around the lads. There's a great team spirit. The confidence is flowing, I don't see why not [we can't go all the way] but we take each game as it comes. [You don't seem very exuberant] I'm always like this in interviews. 3:06PM Opta's statistical pointers England have won both of their opening two group stage games at a World Cup tournament for the third time, also doing so in 1982 and 2006. This was England’s biggest ever win in a major tournament match (World Cup and European Championships). This was only the fifth occasion a side had scored five goals before half-time in a World Cup match, and the first since Germany did so against Brazil in the 2014 semi-final. England scored as many goals in this match as they had in their previous seven World Cup matches combined (6). Only in 1966 (11) have England scored more goals in a single World Cup tournament than they have in 2018 (8, same as 1954 and 1990). John Stones became the first England defender to score two goals in a single World Cup match. Harry Kane is only the third England player to score a hat-trick in a World Cup match, after Geoff Hurst vs Germany in the 1966 final and Gary Lineker vs Poland in 1986. England striker Harry Kane is the first player to have scored at least twice in both of his first two ever World Cup appearances since Poland’s Grzegorz Lato in 1974. Lato went on to win the Golden Boot at that tournament. England’s Harry Kane is now the leading scorer at the 2018 World Cup with five goals. He’s scored with all five of his shots on target in the tournament. 3:02PM Harry Kane speaks Fantastic. So proud of the boys. Just enjoying being here.They started pretty well but we've been working on the setpieces and it all came together. The match ball is one of my lucky ones but I'll take it. It's been brilliant, both sets of fans. Ours have always been great but it's what the World Cup is all about. We're not going to get too far ahead of ourselves but you have to believe. There's a long way to go but we have to stick to our game plan. A bit disappointed to concede at the end. We'll go into Belgium looking for a win but let's see what happens. Now we'll rest, recover and get ready for next week. 2:57PM Here's your chance to rate the players England player rater 2:53PM Full time England 6-1 Panama A hat-trick for Kane, two for Stones and a screamer from Lingard give England their record victory in tournament football. They led 5-0 at half-time and then squeezed the game, harboured their reserves and celebrate a famous victory. 2:51PM 90+2 min England 6-1 Panama The game has pretty much petered out in the second half but I suppose that is evidence of clever game management and resource protection by England. Lingard, a picture of joy, juggles a plastic cup with his feet while sitting on the bench. 2:49PM 90 min England 6-1 Panama Young's cross is flicked on towards the centre of goal and Stones, on a hat-trick, just fails to connect with a stabbed finish. Penedo gobbles it up gratefully. We'll have four more minutes. 2:48PM 89 min England 6-1 Panama There are horns and cow bells contributing to the cacophony. England have a free kick about 35m out, left of centre. Young will take. 2:46PM 87 min England 6-1 Panama Vardy sprints down the right, whitewash on the soles of his feet, and beats Davis. He fires over a deep cross outside the box for Delph who has to jump high to trap it, which he accomplishes but lands awkwardly so mis-hist his pass. 2:44PM 86 min England 6-1 Panama 'Nothing wrong with a boring second half,' says Danny Murphy and, of course, it makes sense. Rashford for Lingard, though, would have been something worth seeing. 2:42PM 84 min England 6-1 Panama England pass it around slowly around the back - killing time and the game understandably. Vardy has hardly touched the ball. 2:41PM 82 min England 6-1 Panama Sterling tacks in from the left flank on to his right foot and sends a curving shot whistling past the far post. Hit very sweetly on the instep but not enough whip to bring it back in. 2:39PM 80 min England 6-1 Panama The goal was set up by one sub and scored by the other. Henderson, acting captain, gives the players a rollicking and tells them to step it back up. England 6 - 1 Panama (Felipe Baloy, 78 min) 2:38PM 78 min England 6-1 Panama And that goal is greeted more raucously than any of the preceding six by the crowd who have embraced their hordes of Panamanian guests. 2:37PM GOAL!! England 6-1 Panama Baloy - the 37-year-old - does what Torres didn't, connects with a sliding half-volley, this lone from about 8m when England's offside trap falls apart from a free-kick on the left. Poor defending. Crisp finish. 2:35PM 75 min England 6-0 Panama Rodriguez sprints between Walker and Young and gets to it first to cross. It's overhit but Rose lets it go out for a corner on the right nit knowing if there was anyone behind him. They whip in the corner and it's glanced on to the back post. Torres telescopes out his right leg and lunges to tap it in from a metre but bludgeons it wide. 2:33PM 74 min England 6-0 Panama He chips it to the far post where Maguire wins it and knocks it back across. Another touch sends it out to the 18-yard line where Henderson, shouting Loftus-Cheek to 'leave it!' hooks a roundhouse volley - a 'Ronnie Whelan' for older readers, and hooks it powerfully round the left post. 2:31PM 72 min England 6-0 Panama Ashley Young, now playing on the right, takes a free-kick from the left. England's sixth came from an inadvertent deflection off Harry Kane Credit: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images 2:28PM 68 min England 6-0 Panama Murillo loses the ball on the right and it allows time for substitutions. Rose replaces Trippier who took a knock. That's six Tykes. For Panama Barcenas and Perez go off, Baloy and Arroyo come on. 2:26PM 65 min England 6-0 Panama Barcenas darts down the inside right channel and has a chance from a tight angle but Pickford is out smartly to blocktackle him and Stones and Walker deal with the ball comfortably. Here comes another Yorkshireman in Rose. White shirts, white rose. 2:24PM 63 min England 6-0 Panama Harry Kane is now the leading scorer in the tournament and the third England World Cup hat-trick man after Sir Geoff Hurst and Gary Lineker. 2:22PM 60 min England 6-0 Panama No, the goal stands. Loftus-Cheek's shot hits Kane's heel and balloons over the keeper. That;s his last touch. Kane is going off to be replaced by Vardy and Lingard will be replaced by Delph. This is not England any more. It's Yorkshire v Panama. England 6 - 0 Panama (Harry Kane, 62 min) 2:20PM GOAL!! England 6-0 Panama Kane has his hat-trick. VAR might scrub this off, though. 2:19PM 60 min England 5-0 Panama Panama move the ball to the right and back again as England set themselves in compact defensive lines to win the ball back. Stones has three runners upfield but doesn't make the right choice. 2:17PM 58 min England 5-0 Panama Panama continue to engage in some after-tackle filth, hands in faces, sly kicks and digs. 2:16PM 56 min England 5-0 Panama Pickford taps it to Walker who plays it up to Henderson and he gives Kane a hare to chase with a long ball up the inside-right channel. Escobar, who has improved, gets there first. 2:15PM 55 min England 5-0 Panama No criticism that England have not resumed as they finished the half. They're trying to find their rhythm. 2:13PM 54 min England 5-0 Panama Fingers burnt by the penalty, they keep their hands largely to themselves this time. But Trippier's centre is well-defended. Possession: England vs Panama 2:12PM 52 min England 5-0 Panama With all the caveats about how useless Panama have been defensively and in the final third, Sterling is playing very well, adopting some excellent positions and playing some penetrating passes. England have a throw on the right and give it to Loftus-Cheek who tries to round Escobar by the byline but is tackled. England corner. Panama;s defenders are warned again. 2:09PM 50 min England 5-0 Panama Kane has the ball on halfway and Sterling hurtles out of the blocks beyond the defence when Kane releases it. Brilliant run but Kane's pass was too heavy. They had beaten the offside trap but the throughball was too close to Penedo who pelted out to win the race with Sterling. 2:07PM 48 min England 5-0 Panama But Barcenas misjudges Perez's run and plays the wrong pass into the box. England pounce on it and set off on a rapid counter. 2:06PM 47 min England 5-0 Panama Panama are passing the ball around slowly, keen, one thinks, not to be humiliated further. They inject some pace now and work a triangle up the right. 2:05PM 46 min England 5-0 Panama England attack up the right, Loftus-Cheek and Trippier combining well and crossing to the back post for Kane who beat Torres but cannot squeeze an attempt on goal. 2:02PM Praise indeed What can i say, unbelievable! #WorldCup— Sir Geoff Hurst (@TheGeoffHurst) June 24, 2018 1:58PM John Stones's second and Harry Kane's second John Stones scores his second England goal Credit: AP Photo/Victor Caivano And here's Harry Kane's second penalty. He went the same way but even if the keeper had it would have amputated his right hand at the wrist. Harry Kane scores his fourth World Cup goal of 2018 Credit: REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado 1:55PM Half-time reading Here's a gallery of the worst teams at international tournaments. Here's Lingard's goal and Sterling deserves great praise for his cute pass: Jesse Lingard puts England 3-0 up Credit: REUTERS/Matthew Childs Jesse Lingard celebrates after scoring his first World Cup goal Credit: AP Photo/Matthias Schrader 1:50PM Sorry went too early - it's only half-time of course Here's Paul Hayward on the first goal: "Grappling in the box looks clever until you ignore the runner, as Panama did there with John Stones, who darted between wrestling matches to put England in front.@ 1:49PM Half-time What a terrific first-half performance form England. They lead a World Cup game 5-0 and there's still 45 minutes to come. If Panama finish with 11 men I'm a Dutchman. 1:48PM 45+1 min England 5-0 Panama Maguire is smacked in the mouth by Cooper who swings his arm as they leap. That looked deliberate. Panama are losing all discipline and the plot. Looks like they'll go down swinging, literally. Dirty devils. 1:47PM 44 min England 5-0 Panama So Kane joins Lukaku and Ronaldo on four goals apiece. Goal: England ( 45 + 1 min ) 1:46PM GOAL! England 5-0 Panama Escobar and Torres pantomime disapproval at the penalty and are booked which eats up more time for Kane to settle himself. But he isn't fazed. He torpedoes it into the same place. 1:44PM England penalty! Kane is being grappled at a corner. The referee warns the players not to do it three times but they don't listen. Godoy tries to bodyslam Kane. 1:43PM 40 min England 4-0 Panama Amazing. Henderson receives the pass on the edge of the penalty area back to goal and hooks a cross to Kane beyond the right post. He nods it across to Sterling whose header from a couple of metres is saved by Penedo and Stones is first to the rebound on the right and forces his header into the roof of the net. England 4 - 0 Panama (John Stones, 40 min) 1:40PM GOAL!! England 4-0 Panama John Stones from a perfectly-executed free-kick routine. 1:39PM 36 min England 3-0 Panama Lingard, battered from pillar to post for the first 15 minutes, glides in from the left to take Sterling's stabbed pass and bends a venomous shot from the left side of the D around the onrushing, panicking defenders and into the top right corner of the goal. This is a bit like England v Poland from 1986. England 3 - 0 Panama (Jesse Lingard, 36 min) Goal: England ( 36 min ) 1:36PM GOAL!! England 3-0 Panama Lingard with a lovely right-foot shot from 20m, steered into the top corner. 1:35PM 33 min England 2-0 Panama Lingard bails Maguire out at the back with a diligent and dogged tracking run after Maguire loses his position. He has many attributes Maguire but he needs too screw the nut. There are too many errors. 1:34PM 30 min England 2-0 Panama England free-kick 35m out. Trippier will take. The break affords Murphy and Mowbray some time for golf banter. Trippier strikes it well, curling it deep beyond the back post where it is met by Maguire's run. He heads it back across goal and over the other post. He should have squared it to his team-mates in the middle or gone for goal but it turned into neither one thing or the other. Harry Kane strikes the penalty Credit: JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images 1:30PM 28 min England 2-0 Panama Much better from Panama who enjoy a couple of minutes of sinuous movement and sharp passing. They work an opening through Cooper and Perez for Rodriguez to run on to a threaded pass in the box, to the left. He has Godoy peeling off his marker and free but lashes a shot from an acute angle into orbit. What a waste. 1:29PM 26 min England 2-0 Panama Young penalised for kicking Cooper where the sun doesn't shine as he raised his leg to control a bouncing ball. Henderson hooks a lob over the back four for Sterling who wins it but was offside. Ruben Loftus-Cheek has been booked for a foul just after the third kick-off. Here's Kane putting the penalty in something my son and his schoofriends call 'top bins': Goal: England ( 22 min ) Harry Kane buries England's second from the spot Credit: Jan Kruger/Getty Images) 1:25PM 24 min England 2-0 Panama Panama's strategy seems to be to inject as much needle into this as possible, after all sorts of niggly fouls and delaying tactics, they complain that England take too long in their celebrations, this after forestalling the taking of the pen by almost 150 seconds. 1:23PM 22 min England 2-0 Panama Blimey! That was some penalty. He almost ripped the net with his thunderfoot. 1:22PM GOAL!! England 2-0 Panama Yes he can, despite some shoving from Barcenas on Lingard on the 18-yard line and Gomez trying to spook the taker. Smashes it into the top-right corner. 1:21PM No offside So Kane will take the penalty. Can he score in his fifth successive match for England? 1:20PM England penalty! Lingard bundled over by Escobar and Torres as he ran down the inside-right channel. VAR is checking whether he was offside. 1:19PM 18 min England 1-0 Panama Torres kicks across Sterling's foot and catches his studs. He goes down screaming blue murder until the ref stops the game for his self-inflicted pain. England 1 - 0 Panama (John Stones, 8 min) 1:18PM 16 min England 1-0 Panama For the third time Panama exploit hesitation from Young and Maguire on the left of England's defence to dial up the speed and shift the ball inside quickly. Barcenas, striding forward down the inside-left channel, meets the pass from Murillo and bends a left-foot shot that has Pickford scrambling across goal and diving but it trims the outside of the side-netting. Close, though. 1:15PM 14 min England 1-0 Panama Dawdling by Torres invites Kane twice to have a run at the defence but he can't keep the ball under control and the opposition recover. Here's Stones' goal: Stones puts England into the lead Credit: Alex Morton/Getty Images 1:13PM 12 min England 1-0 Panama England lose possession cheaply from the free-kick, Maguire's poise and precision absent so far. Barcenas accelerates away from him and into the box. Walker clears up the first mess but England cause another that Panama's haste squanders. Walker's lunge stopped Perez tapping in at the back post. 1:11PM 11 min England 1-0 Panama Cooper lunges in at Lingard just past halfway and clatters into his shin pad malevolently. Yellow card. 1:10PM 9 min England 1-0 Panama Maguire and Kane were being grappled and obstructed with octopus arms but Stones wriggled free of his assailant and stooped to steer in a bullet header from Trippier's fine corner. 1:08PM GOAL! England 1-0 Panama John Stones buries a header from the penalty spot. 1:08PM 7 min England 0-0 Panama Good pass from Walker, diagonally out to the right flank, for Trippier's clever run and teh full-back wins a corner. 1:07PM 6 min England 0-0 Panama Panama's tempo has caught England on the hop a bit and Rodriguez, the victim of Henderson's foul, is felled again as they snap into tackles. The free-kick is taken too long and England come back upfield but at no great pace. 1:06PM 5 min England 0-0 Panama Panama take the free-kick into the box Kane heads clear and Barcenas wallops a 25m shot over the bar. Then Panama exploit the short goalkick and Maguire's poor pass to break down the left and find space for Godoy to shoot and he too thrashes it high and wide. Terrible finish but England invited the pressure with dozy play there. 1:04PM 3 min England 0-0 Panama After 90secs treatment Lingard is passed fit to continue and Panama restart, knocking it down the left where Henderson is penalised for a strong tackle. 1:03PM 2 min England 0-0 Panama And drags a pass back from the byline to Lingard whose first touch is clumsy and he has to go up to try to win it back in the air. Gomez elbows him in the mouth as they challenge for it but the referee deems it accidental. He did swing his arm back but he isn't penalised. 1:02PM 1 min England 0-0 Panama Panama 's huddle finally breaks up and England kick-off, attacking to the left and overloaded on the right flank. They roll it back to Stones and the three players on the right bomb forward but they play it short and move it to the left and back again. Trippier slips a pass past Davis and Loftus-Cheek rounds him. 12:59PM Two minutes to go The players chat and shake their legs. 12:57PM Some Panama fans and players Have gone for the full Dallaglio, moist eyed and bellowing it out. Tune. 12:56PM England stand with their arms across each other's shoulders For the national anthem and when it ends Harry Kane shouts 'Come on!, Come on!' There are far more Panama fans there than England's and they sing lustily along. 12:52PM Jesse Lingard Is being interviewed by Gabby Logan and is asked to do his Scouse and Cockney accents. The first is passable, the second risible. Pace Dr Johnson: It's not done well; but you are surprised to find it done at all. 12:47PM Pre-hydration routines This really should be the match shirt. Harry Kane takes a swig Credit: Maja Hitij - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images 12:45PM The temperature is heading up 34C Gareth Southgate says he will be using England's hydration strategy but there will be no official water breaks. On the Brexit scale 34C is 93F so he will have to employ his substitutes judiciously. "We think we will have the vast majority of the play, which is good in this heat, but we have to move the ball quickly and use width intelligently. The prize for today is to qualify with a game to spare but we have to concentrate on our performance. We need to be patient." 12:36PM Alan Shearer and Gary Lineker Have just embraced and jumped up and down, a la Chandler and Joey, in imitation of the excitement of the Panama World Cup panel. Them Shearer reveals that he has had a word with Harry Kane and told him to speak to the referee about holding at corners before they are taken. Now the BBC is using Joy Divsion's Day of the Lords for a montage. I applaud their taste but it's sacrilege to have people talking over it. Music is to be listened to, not deployed as background. 12:28PM Those starting XIs in black and white and their records England (3-1-4-1-1) Pickford; Walker, Stones, Maguire; Henderson; Trippier, Loftus-Cheek, Lingard, Young; Sterling; Kane. World Cup record: England Panama (4-5-1) Penedo; Murillo, R Torres, Escobar, Davis; Barcenas, Cooper, Gomez, Godoy, J Rodriguez; Perez. World Cup record: Panama Referee Gehad Grisha (History) 12:21PM England wear white, Panama red See how our Anna Wintour, Thom Gibbs, assesses the strips: World Cup kits ranked 12:20PM Spoiler alert Ninety minutes' ebb and flow can be a bit of a distraction for some. If you'd like to know the final score now, have a go on the Telegraph's ingenious AI forecaster: World Cup 2018 Simulator Single Game 12:08PM The heat is oppressive Jason Burt reports: The air conditioning in the England dressing room has been turned up to the maximum ahead of kick-off against Panama in an attempt to keep the players as cool as possible before the game starts. The players will also be given a fresh kit at half-time and iced towels to try and control their body temperatures with the temperatures on the pitch here in Nizhny Novgorod soaring towards the high 30 degrees celsius. The England medical staff are confident that the air conditioning in the dressing room will help although there may be a concern that the dry air could affect the breathing of the players, especially those susceptible to asthma. However the medics do not believe this will be a problem with dehumidifiers in use and, because the stadium is new, an air conditioning system which means it is ice cold inside the dressing room. In previous matches in such conditions England have also used fans inside the dressing room with players wearing ice vests as they warmed up but the more light-weight training gear is believed to be sufficient this time. Sometimes kit is also sprayed with a cooling agent and water to also help. A big issue will be hydration. Players will be urged to take on board as much fluid as possible and to hydrate at every opportunity during the match. The design of the stadium means that around half of the pitch will be in shade at kick-off but heat will undoubtedly be a factor. Gareth Southgate acknowledges the England supporters before the game Credit: REUTERS/Matthew Childs It may be roasting but Southgate's not taking off that weskit for anyone. Deux bieres et un pastis, garçon, s'il-vous plait. 12:04PM England make one change Ruben Loftus-Cheek comes in for Dele Alli and will partner Jesse Lingard in the midfield duo ahead of Jordan Henderson. Raheem Sterling starts and Marcus Rashford will continue as an impact sub. He's a terrific talent, Rashford, but I can see the sense in employing his impact as a substitute and his understanding of the opportunities the role provides - he seems more aware of them than Sterling and his better control in tight areas can turn tired defenders. If Sterling does his job and keeps running hard down the channels, Rashford can cash in later on. 11:59AM England team confirmed Here's the #ThreeLions teamsheet for today's game, as @rubey_lcheek comes in to replace @dele_official. �� pic.twitter.com/HztXwZSp0B— England (@England) June 24, 2018 11:58AM How England should go about their business today Here's our 140-cap columnist's take: What England must get right on and off the pitch to beat Panama and advance in this World Cup 11:55AM And another well-wisher Whose original intention was to retire at the end of this, his fourth World Cup, but wisely decided to call it a day 10 months early: Come on @England!! #ThreeLions— Wayne Rooney (@WayneRooney) June 24, 2018 11:52AM Panama avoid team sheet melodrama By naming an unchanged XI for today's match 24 hours early: Panama Penedo; Murillo, Roman Torres, Escobar, Davis; Barcenas, Cooper, Gomez, Godoy, Jose Luis Rodriguez; Perez. Substitutes Calderon, Cummings, Gabriel Torres, Diaz, Machado, Pimentel, Arroyo, Ovalle, Tejada, Avila, Baloy, Alex Rodriguez. Pointers from the Belgium game - Murillo is pretty good, Roman Torres is an ox, Barcenas a snapper and young Rodriguez is going to be a fine player. 11:46AM England fans begin to arrive at the stadium Flying the flag Credit: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire Robert Mendick and Wil Crisp report: "Travelling England fans have never been so middle-class. Nizhny Novgorod, a city on the Volga once so sensitive it was ‘closed’ to visitors in Soviet times, was laid siege on Saturday by a small army of England fans made up of lecturers, chartered accountants, investment bankers, company CEOs and the like. Read the rest of the article here ... [The game's gone] 11:39AM A man, a plan ... a palindrome Opposition research - plenty of troubling stuff that comes under that category in today's newspapers. This is far more wholesome: 16 things you didn't know about Panama 11:32AM England alumni reporting for duty This is what it is all about. Come on England!!!!!! ������ #ENGPANpic.twitter.com/3Gul6XnOh7— Ian Wright (@IanWright0) June 24, 2018 Arms up for a victory today! Come on @England �������������� ����‍♂ #bbcworldcup#russia2018#ENGPANpic.twitter.com/zOSzN5tISx— Alan Shearer (@alanshearer) June 24, 2018 The guys wearing @england shirt today feel like a group who have an understanding of what the manager wants from them & who believe in all he asks. A recipe for good days ahead. Let’s go ������ #england#worldcup#ENG#3lionspic.twitter.com/cRyonsKbcW— Rio Ferdinand (@rioferdy5) June 24, 2018 11:26AM Ruben Loftus-Cheek should make his first World Cup start Here's what Ruud Gullit had to say about him last September: "I always loved this guy, also when he was at Chelsea. I saw him playing yesterday as well. “He’s so influential and I think the more he plays, the better he gets. He knows how to play his game, he knows how to go forward. Ruben Loftus-Cheek is expected to start in place of Dele Alli Credit: David Ramos - FIFA “I want him in the centre, he needs to have the ball. Technical, strong, he is a fantastic player. He is the one who has the brains. “He’s a future England player, this one. I really believe in this boy, he’s a good player." Here's what Paul Hayward has to say about his selection: Ruben Loftus-Cheek can carry the flag for England's thwarted generation 11:13AM England missed a spectacular night in St Petersburg People watch fireworks and a brig with scarlet sails on the Neva River during the Scarlet Sails festivities marking school graduation in St Petersburg Credit: Photo/Dmitri Lovetsky 11:07AM Team news Matt Scott reports that England will make only one change rather than the anticipated two and that Raheem Sterling, scorer of 18 Premier League goals and provider of 11 Premier League assists en route to the title last year, has been retained in the starting XI. Read the full story here. Raheem Sterling will start his fourth World Cup match for England and second in succession in Nizhny Novgorod against Panama Credit: Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images 10:55AM England's qualification game In an intriguing twist to Wonderful World, Gareth Southgate adapted the words of Sam Cooke, Herb Alpert and Lou Adler to say history is not the important thing for this team’. Biology? Science book? The French they took? Word came there none. The only thing that matters, he says, is making their own history and they can certainly share an achievement today if they defeat Panama and join ‘Ron’s 22’ from 1982 and Sven’s band of Baden-Baden Charlie Big Potatoes from 2006 as England sides who have won their opening two group games at a World Cup. The England manager, by contrast with his players, is a student of history (no word on geography, trigonometry, algebra or what a slide rule is for). Southgate is known to the friends he grew up with at Crystal Palace as ‘'Nord’, a name bestowed on him by Wally Downes, but it is one that reflects the observational sharpness of a dressing-room wit. The young Gareth, with his eight O-levels and relatively affluent upbringing in Crawley, contrasted markedly with his more cocky and shrewdly streetwise South London contemporaries in the Palace youth team. His considered, unhurried way of speaking reminded Downes of Denis Norden, erstwhile co-writer of Take It From Here and a regular TV face hosting It’ll be Alright on the Night and speaking with his mouth full while selling Nuttall’s Mintoes. In an age when anyone in the game who spoke measuredly or enjoyed reading was instantly derided as ‘Prof’ or ‘Brains’, a descendant of the old Army contempt for ‘book learning’ characterised in It Ain’t Half Hot Mum’s ‘Mr La-Di-Dah Gunner Graham’, ‘Nord’ was a cut above. World Cup 2018 | The best of the Telegraph's coverage It stuck but his greenness did not. With the help of the goalkeeper Andy Woodman, the Hush Puppies and Ronnie Corbett golf sweaters that were so mocked behind his back were eased out and a lifelong friendship chronicled in a joint autobiography, Woody and Nord, nurtured them both. Southgate’s intelligence and application benefited him, too, and he became the youngest full-time captain in the country in 1993-94, the season he led Palace back into the Premier League. After Palace’s relegation in 1995, Southgate left in the summer for Aston Villa where he expected to join Andy Townsend and Ian Taylor in his usual central midfield role. So did Brian Little, the man who signed him for £2.5 million, but a fortnight later could not resist buying Mark Draper when Leicester finally agreed to sell. Little, an underrated, strangely neglected manager, put him between Ugo Ehiogu and Paul McGrath in a back-three, a move so successful that England called him up after only eight games in the position. Not what he seems: Gareth Southgate Credit: Matthias Hangst/Getty Images When Des Walker lost his aura of impregnability in the early Nineties, England reverted to type at the back, ‘head-on-a-stick’ centre-halfs, as Gary Lineker called them, or export maypoles, the static object around which foreigners would dance. Terry Venables wanted something more progressive, a centre-back who was comfortable moving out of defence to pick up opponents attacking from deeper positions. Southgate flourished in the role and, despite the penalty miss in the Euro 96 semi-final that will forever shadow him, continued to perform astutely in Glenn Hoddle’s sides, never better than during the 0-0 draw with Italy that secured qualification for the 1998 World Cup. His game continued to evolve well into his thirties, becoming as accomplished an orthodox central defender in a back-four as he had been in a three and it is a testament to his quality and durability that when Rio Ferdinand was banned for missing a drugs test in 2003, Sir Alex Ferguson immediately tried to sign the 33-year-old from Middlesbrough. How England can get the job done against physical Panama Looking back it seems obvious that he was born to manage but given that he has moved at the Football Association from Head of Elite Development to Under-21 head coach to England manager, it is odd to recall that he succeeded Steve McClaren at the Riverside without a Pro Licence, in the face of much opposition from the League Managers Association, and had to qualify on the job. Southgate looks the model of a modern coach, even down to the DH Lawrence beard - cosmopolitan, flexible and cerebral. Yet there are echoes too of Malcolm Allison and Dave Sexton, whose undervalued toughness complemented their sprightly creativity and aptitude for teaching. But don’t be fooled by appearance. Twice in the past he has identified that inspiration is key - first when he witheringly said of Eriksson’s half-time team-talk when England had just conceded a stoppage-time equaliser in the 2002 World Cup quarter-final: “We were expecting Winston Churchill and instead got Iain Duncan Smith.” And then again in 2006 when advocating a successor for Eriksson: “I want an Englishman who’s going to say: ‘Remember Churchill.’” If anyone in Nizhny Novgorod hears strains of ‘We shall fight on the beaches’ delivered in the extraordinary, deliberate tones of Denis Norden this afternoon, there can be only one culprit: a man who continues to defy all preconceptions. As for Panama, who fought bravely against Belgium, kettled them and hobbled them with some cynical and wild tackles, the 30C heat in the city once known as Gorky after Maxim, though Sorrento and Capri had similar claims over the writer, should have a greater toll on much older legs. They are a veteran side, a tough side and play with genuinely intimidating muscular athleticism. Any thoughts that they may trial a new approach here have been thoroughly debunked by their veteran defensive midfielder Gabriel Gomez. “We are men, we are aggressive,” he said. “Football is played with aggression, with desire. We are a team that knows how to play and when we have to fight, we fight.” For all that, they are pretty enlightened technically if not always tactically and can open up a defence with decent movement - at no great pace - and some inspired passing angles. Against Belgium they were unable to commit runners consistently to help out their lone 37-year-old forward and settled for an attritional scrap that frustrated world-class talents such as Eden Hazard and Kevin De Bruyne and made them look pedestrian. It took a terrific strike from Dries Mertens to prise Panama’s vice-grip around their throats early in the second half after a stultifying first 45 minutes. Class will out but England and their supporters will have to be patient.
Harry Kane scores hat-trick as England hit Panama for six to secure World Cup knock-out qualification
Group standings and permutations You are the VAR: Think you can do better than the World Cup referees? Test yourself here Get Telegraph Football WhatsApp for in-match analysis and talking points throughout the World Cup Jim White: Fantastic fans and where to find them at World Cup 2018 ​There have been so many times when England were such a tactically flat, stressed-out bunch that they could squeeze the joy out of battering even the meekest opposition, so against Panama you had to rub your eyes at the general levels of fun being had. This was England as we rarely see them, the game won in the first half, a place in the second round with a match to spare and a general feeling of abandon that anything could happen. Harry Kane notched only the third World Cup hat-trick in English history, and then there was an unfamiliar competence observed on the basics of the game, especially two set-piece goals created for John Stones that demonstrated actual planning. Everything that could go right for England did although they never felt lucky and they chuckled at Kane’s third that ricocheted off his heel while he was looking the other way. Somewhere in the Moscow outskirts one could only guess at the grand disdain Cristiano Ronaldo will have felt at being supplanted as the tournament’s top scorer in that manner. It hardly needs saying that this was England’s biggest World Cup win but it was also World Cup football as enjoyment rather than the usual torture. Afterwards, Gareth Southgate conjured up the modern English pastoral when he said he was glad to have delivered goals for a public watching at home on a “warm Sunday afternoon”. A great vision of barbecues ablaze, televisions repositioned and six times a boozy roar across the back gardens. Out in the scorching mid-afternoon of Nizhny Novgorod, an industrial goliath east of Moscow, England looked strangely at ease in a foreign land: with the heat, with the pressure of being the favourites, with the rhythm of tournament football. They once got to half-time against Andorra in Barcelona in a Euro 2008 qualifier without sticking a goal past the part-timers of the ski resort nation and yet this time they had buried the first within nine minutes. Later the Panama coach would excuse his players their tactical naivety and their relentless corner routine grappling by proclaiming that the nation had made history with their first World Cup goal from substitute Felipe Badoy. “We are virgins!” Hernan Dario Gomez said. “We have been born before the due date! We are debutants. We have to celebrate what we have done.” Yet the team ranked 55th in the world edged out the United States on their way to qualification. What mattered was the performance was good from England, and the greediness with which they helped themselves to five before half-time showed a little frission of pleasure at being the bullies for once. Southgate called it “ruthlessness” and there was something very smart about the way in which Stones swept through the pack unmarked to head in the first while Panama stuck doggedly to their gameplan of trying to spear-tackle Harry Maguire at every dead ball situation. England permutations | Who could they face in knockout stages? Southgate credited his strikers’ coach Allan Russell for the finessing of set-pieces and the Scot has done good work, especially with the fourth that was worked back and forth across the box before Stones nodded in his second. Jesse Lingard won the penalty for Kane’s first, and curled in the third after an exchange with Raheem Sterling. Kane won his second penalty himself just before half-time with Anibal Godoy trying to coerce him in the penalty area with all the subtlety of a new pub landlord breaking up his first fight. Both Kane penalties were dispatched with a viciousness that spoke of a confidence in that particular art - which is also unusual when it comes to England. They went in five goals up. The Panama captain Roman Torres, a big man who also nurtured a Maguire preoccupation in the first half, beckoned his team-mates together for a chat on the pitch. There was a conversation, although sadly not the full Phil Brown routine. Kieran Trippier departed in the second half with a minor strain but he had done enough to underline his new pre-eminence from dead balls. It was he who picked out Stones from a corner for the first, and Trippier then found Lingard before he was fouled for the first of two penalties. Southgate made a place for his understudy right-back in this new formation and Trippier’s range of delivery ticks all the boxes. The last group game against Belgium in Kaliningrad on Thursday, with its full complement of England fans in the Russian exclave on the Gulf of Finland will not be the decisive match it could have been. Southgate said later his preoccupation was “squad harmony” and giving chances to those who have not played much, which will include the three unused outfield players, Gary Cahill, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Phil Jones. There is the tricky question of whether first or second place in Group G will open up the better route for England, identically matched with Belgium and in first place by virtue of disciplinary record. With Romelu Lukaku nursing an injury and Kane potentially rested it could yet be a strange hand of poker that both managers play. England have been here before, hedging their bets on the last group game and came out the worse for it. That was at Euro 2016 when the momentum of a win over Wales in the second group game was squandered when Roy Hodgson rested key players for the final game against Slovakia. England were pitched into a fateful second round tie against Iceland rather than Northern Ireland and the rest is so many bad memories. Both Southgate and Roberto Martinez have said they want to win the game although we wait to see. Kane’s third cannoned off him, a Ruben Loftus-Cheek shot heading in another direction, and Southgate immediately replaced him with Jamie Vardy. Fabian Delph played his first minutes in place of Lingard and Trippier was later substituted for Danny Rose. This is the shape of the England team that is likely to play against Belgium. The last time England showed anything like this promise in a tournament, at Euro 2004, it was the third group game that they lost Rooney to injury so perhaps caution will be Southgate’s guiding light. Even so, they lit a fuse against lowly Panama. Unlike so many of their predecessors at tournaments, England feel part of this one - scoring goals, forcing others to notice them. When he took the job on a permanent basis, Southgate recalled watching a highlights reel of the 2014 World Cup at a Fifa draw and noticing with horror that not once did it feature England, so meagre had their efforts been at that tournament. Already England are on the highlights reel for 2018. They have scored eight goals in two games and have the tournament’s current top striker. Having hit this kind of pace it would be a shame to see it peter out against Belgium before they embark on the second round. They might not have the best squad at the tournament but they have some form at last and the confidence flowing from that is of the kind we have not seen in years. 3:57PM Well, this is something Even if Loftus-Cheek's pass was really a shot: 25 - There were 25 uninterrupted passes played by England before their 6th goal today; the longest sequence for a World Cup goal since 1966 & one more pass than Esteban Cambiasso's goal for Argentina v Serbia in 2006 (24). Fortunate.#Eng#EngPan#WorldCuppic.twitter.com/pBnHr1EEKr— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) June 24, 2018 3:55PM How they stand 3:46PM The captain speaks again Professional. Clinical. Bring on Belgium and the knockout rounds. �� #ThreeLions#WorldCuppic.twitter.com/QXSsHNoejq— Harry Kane (@HKane) June 24, 2018 3:24PM Gareth Southgate speaks "I didn’t like the performance. Well, I didn’t like the start, and I didn’t like the goal at the end, but I guess the bits in the middle were pretty good. I think we were a little bit anxious at the beginning. We played some really good stuff after 35, 40 minutes. "The second half is difficult. We talked about the importance of one more goal to be top of the group, which is why the goal at the end is disappointing. But it’s really rewarding to see how well they’re playing, and how much they’re enjoying their football. "Big moments for Jess Lingard today, of course great for the captain to get his hat-trick which made it easier to take him off. [Was he OK about coming off?] Probably not but I've got a group to look after and there were some heavy tackles flyinhg about. "We said before the game, no more yellow cards. That was a key part of the second half, definitely. "We want to keep momentum, so we’ll have to have a think about the team we want to put out [against Belgium]. There’s an opportunity as well that players that need a match, but also we want to keep winning football matches. It’s a nice decision to have." 3:21PM Breaking news about England's anthem for the Belgium game It's been changed to this for Messrs Walker, Stones, Maguire, Rose, Delph and Vardy: 3:18PM Ruben Loftus-Cheek has a word "To win 6-1 in the World Cup is fantastic. I’m delighted with that. I think we want to put on a good performance for the fans, but also for ourselves. "For such a young captain [Harry is] so vocal. I think everyone respects him massively, what he’s done for Tottenham and bringing it in for England. Ruben Loftus-Cheek made his first World Cup start and it was his shot that Harry Kane deflected in for his hat-trick Credit: AP Photo/Alastair Grant "We work on set pieces a lot, and to see it coming good in the games when we prepare so much for it. It’s such a big factor in games, we put in so much work and we’re glad that it keeps coming out on the pitch." 3:14PM Ashley Young takes the mic "The togetherness I’ve seen is incredible. Off the pitch everybody mixes with each other. Everybody wants the ball, nobody shies away from the ball. We’ve got to keep on doing that, keep showing our confidence and keep playing the way we have. The start of something good Credit: JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images "We’ve just got to keep our feet on the ground and keep working hard in training. This could be the start of something good. 3:10PM Relive the match in a minute 3:09PM Here are Ben Rumsby's ratings England vs Panama player ratings 3:08PM Jesse Lingard speaks I thrive in that role. It's great to be around the lads. There's a great team spirit. The confidence is flowing, I don't see why not [we can't go all the way] but we take each game as it comes. [You don't seem very exuberant] I'm always like this in interviews. 3:06PM Opta's statistical pointers England have won both of their opening two group stage games at a World Cup tournament for the third time, also doing so in 1982 and 2006. This was England’s biggest ever win in a major tournament match (World Cup and European Championships). This was only the fifth occasion a side had scored five goals before half-time in a World Cup match, and the first since Germany did so against Brazil in the 2014 semi-final. England scored as many goals in this match as they had in their previous seven World Cup matches combined (6). Only in 1966 (11) have England scored more goals in a single World Cup tournament than they have in 2018 (8, same as 1954 and 1990). John Stones became the first England defender to score two goals in a single World Cup match. Harry Kane is only the third England player to score a hat-trick in a World Cup match, after Geoff Hurst vs Germany in the 1966 final and Gary Lineker vs Poland in 1986. England striker Harry Kane is the first player to have scored at least twice in both of his first two ever World Cup appearances since Poland’s Grzegorz Lato in 1974. Lato went on to win the Golden Boot at that tournament. England’s Harry Kane is now the leading scorer at the 2018 World Cup with five goals. He’s scored with all five of his shots on target in the tournament. 3:02PM Harry Kane speaks Fantastic. So proud of the boys. Just enjoying being here.They started pretty well but we've been working on the setpieces and it all came together. The match ball is one of my lucky ones but I'll take it. It's been brilliant, both sets of fans. Ours have always been great but it's what the World Cup is all about. We're not going to get too far ahead of ourselves but you have to believe. There's a long way to go but we have to stick to our game plan. A bit disappointed to concede at the end. We'll go into Belgium looking for a win but let's see what happens. Now we'll rest, recover and get ready for next week. 2:57PM Here's your chance to rate the players England player rater 2:53PM Full time England 6-1 Panama A hat-trick for Kane, two for Stones and a screamer from Lingard give England their record victory in tournament football. They led 5-0 at half-time and then squeezed the game, harboured their reserves and celebrate a famous victory. 2:51PM 90+2 min England 6-1 Panama The game has pretty much petered out in the second half but I suppose that is evidence of clever game management and resource protection by England. Lingard, a picture of joy, juggles a plastic cup with his feet while sitting on the bench. 2:49PM 90 min England 6-1 Panama Young's cross is flicked on towards the centre of goal and Stones, on a hat-trick, just fails to connect with a stabbed finish. Penedo gobbles it up gratefully. We'll have four more minutes. 2:48PM 89 min England 6-1 Panama There are horns and cow bells contributing to the cacophony. England have a free kick about 35m out, left of centre. Young will take. 2:46PM 87 min England 6-1 Panama Vardy sprints down the right, whitewash on the soles of his feet, and beats Davis. He fires over a deep cross outside the box for Delph who has to jump high to trap it, which he accomplishes but lands awkwardly so mis-hist his pass. 2:44PM 86 min England 6-1 Panama 'Nothing wrong with a boring second half,' says Danny Murphy and, of course, it makes sense. Rashford for Lingard, though, would have been something worth seeing. 2:42PM 84 min England 6-1 Panama England pass it around slowly around the back - killing time and the game understandably. Vardy has hardly touched the ball. 2:41PM 82 min England 6-1 Panama Sterling tacks in from the left flank on to his right foot and sends a curving shot whistling past the far post. Hit very sweetly on the instep but not enough whip to bring it back in. 2:39PM 80 min England 6-1 Panama The goal was set up by one sub and scored by the other. Henderson, acting captain, gives the players a rollicking and tells them to step it back up. England 6 - 1 Panama (Felipe Baloy, 78 min) 2:38PM 78 min England 6-1 Panama And that goal is greeted more raucously than any of the preceding six by the crowd who have embraced their hordes of Panamanian guests. 2:37PM GOAL!! England 6-1 Panama Baloy - the 37-year-old - does what Torres didn't, connects with a sliding half-volley, this lone from about 8m when England's offside trap falls apart from a free-kick on the left. Poor defending. Crisp finish. 2:35PM 75 min England 6-0 Panama Rodriguez sprints between Walker and Young and gets to it first to cross. It's overhit but Rose lets it go out for a corner on the right nit knowing if there was anyone behind him. They whip in the corner and it's glanced on to the back post. Torres telescopes out his right leg and lunges to tap it in from a metre but bludgeons it wide. 2:33PM 74 min England 6-0 Panama He chips it to the far post where Maguire wins it and knocks it back across. Another touch sends it out to the 18-yard line where Henderson, shouting Loftus-Cheek to 'leave it!' hooks a roundhouse volley - a 'Ronnie Whelan' for older readers, and hooks it powerfully round the left post. 2:31PM 72 min England 6-0 Panama Ashley Young, now playing on the right, takes a free-kick from the left. England's sixth came from an inadvertent deflection off Harry Kane Credit: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images 2:28PM 68 min England 6-0 Panama Murillo loses the ball on the right and it allows time for substitutions. Rose replaces Trippier who took a knock. That's six Tykes. For Panama Barcenas and Perez go off, Baloy and Arroyo come on. 2:26PM 65 min England 6-0 Panama Barcenas darts down the inside right channel and has a chance from a tight angle but Pickford is out smartly to blocktackle him and Stones and Walker deal with the ball comfortably. Here comes another Yorkshireman in Rose. White shirts, white rose. 2:24PM 63 min England 6-0 Panama Harry Kane is now the leading scorer in the tournament and the third England World Cup hat-trick man after Sir Geoff Hurst and Gary Lineker. 2:22PM 60 min England 6-0 Panama No, the goal stands. Loftus-Cheek's shot hits Kane's heel and balloons over the keeper. That;s his last touch. Kane is going off to be replaced by Vardy and Lingard will be replaced by Delph. This is not England any more. It's Yorkshire v Panama. England 6 - 0 Panama (Harry Kane, 62 min) 2:20PM GOAL!! England 6-0 Panama Kane has his hat-trick. VAR might scrub this off, though. 2:19PM 60 min England 5-0 Panama Panama move the ball to the right and back again as England set themselves in compact defensive lines to win the ball back. Stones has three runners upfield but doesn't make the right choice. 2:17PM 58 min England 5-0 Panama Panama continue to engage in some after-tackle filth, hands in faces, sly kicks and digs. 2:16PM 56 min England 5-0 Panama Pickford taps it to Walker who plays it up to Henderson and he gives Kane a hare to chase with a long ball up the inside-right channel. Escobar, who has improved, gets there first. 2:15PM 55 min England 5-0 Panama No criticism that England have not resumed as they finished the half. They're trying to find their rhythm. 2:13PM 54 min England 5-0 Panama Fingers burnt by the penalty, they keep their hands largely to themselves this time. But Trippier's centre is well-defended. Possession: England vs Panama 2:12PM 52 min England 5-0 Panama With all the caveats about how useless Panama have been defensively and in the final third, Sterling is playing very well, adopting some excellent positions and playing some penetrating passes. England have a throw on the right and give it to Loftus-Cheek who tries to round Escobar by the byline but is tackled. England corner. Panama;s defenders are warned again. 2:09PM 50 min England 5-0 Panama Kane has the ball on halfway and Sterling hurtles out of the blocks beyond the defence when Kane releases it. Brilliant run but Kane's pass was too heavy. They had beaten the offside trap but the throughball was too close to Penedo who pelted out to win the race with Sterling. 2:07PM 48 min England 5-0 Panama But Barcenas misjudges Perez's run and plays the wrong pass into the box. England pounce on it and set off on a rapid counter. 2:06PM 47 min England 5-0 Panama Panama are passing the ball around slowly, keen, one thinks, not to be humiliated further. They inject some pace now and work a triangle up the right. 2:05PM 46 min England 5-0 Panama England attack up the right, Loftus-Cheek and Trippier combining well and crossing to the back post for Kane who beat Torres but cannot squeeze an attempt on goal. 2:02PM Praise indeed What can i say, unbelievable! #WorldCup— Sir Geoff Hurst (@TheGeoffHurst) June 24, 2018 1:58PM John Stones's second and Harry Kane's second John Stones scores his second England goal Credit: AP Photo/Victor Caivano And here's Harry Kane's second penalty. He went the same way but even if the keeper had it would have amputated his right hand at the wrist. Harry Kane scores his fourth World Cup goal of 2018 Credit: REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado 1:55PM Half-time reading Here's a gallery of the worst teams at international tournaments. Here's Lingard's goal and Sterling deserves great praise for his cute pass: Jesse Lingard puts England 3-0 up Credit: REUTERS/Matthew Childs Jesse Lingard celebrates after scoring his first World Cup goal Credit: AP Photo/Matthias Schrader 1:50PM Sorry went too early - it's only half-time of course Here's Paul Hayward on the first goal: "Grappling in the box looks clever until you ignore the runner, as Panama did there with John Stones, who darted between wrestling matches to put England in front.@ 1:49PM Half-time What a terrific first-half performance form England. They lead a World Cup game 5-0 and there's still 45 minutes to come. If Panama finish with 11 men I'm a Dutchman. 1:48PM 45+1 min England 5-0 Panama Maguire is smacked in the mouth by Cooper who swings his arm as they leap. That looked deliberate. Panama are losing all discipline and the plot. Looks like they'll go down swinging, literally. Dirty devils. 1:47PM 44 min England 5-0 Panama So Kane joins Lukaku and Ronaldo on four goals apiece. Goal: England ( 45 + 1 min ) 1:46PM GOAL! England 5-0 Panama Escobar and Torres pantomime disapproval at the penalty and are booked which eats up more time for Kane to settle himself. But he isn't fazed. He torpedoes it into the same place. 1:44PM England penalty! Kane is being grappled at a corner. The referee warns the players not to do it three times but they don't listen. Godoy tries to bodyslam Kane. 1:43PM 40 min England 4-0 Panama Amazing. Henderson receives the pass on the edge of the penalty area back to goal and hooks a cross to Kane beyond the right post. He nods it across to Sterling whose header from a couple of metres is saved by Penedo and Stones is first to the rebound on the right and forces his header into the roof of the net. England 4 - 0 Panama (John Stones, 40 min) 1:40PM GOAL!! England 4-0 Panama John Stones from a perfectly-executed free-kick routine. 1:39PM 36 min England 3-0 Panama Lingard, battered from pillar to post for the first 15 minutes, glides in from the left to take Sterling's stabbed pass and bends a venomous shot from the left side of the D around the onrushing, panicking defenders and into the top right corner of the goal. This is a bit like England v Poland from 1986. England 3 - 0 Panama (Jesse Lingard, 36 min) Goal: England ( 36 min ) 1:36PM GOAL!! England 3-0 Panama Lingard with a lovely right-foot shot from 20m, steered into the top corner. 1:35PM 33 min England 2-0 Panama Lingard bails Maguire out at the back with a diligent and dogged tracking run after Maguire loses his position. He has many attributes Maguire but he needs too screw the nut. There are too many errors. 1:34PM 30 min England 2-0 Panama England free-kick 35m out. Trippier will take. The break affords Murphy and Mowbray some time for golf banter. Trippier strikes it well, curling it deep beyond the back post where it is met by Maguire's run. He heads it back across goal and over the other post. He should have squared it to his team-mates in the middle or gone for goal but it turned into neither one thing or the other. Harry Kane strikes the penalty Credit: JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images 1:30PM 28 min England 2-0 Panama Much better from Panama who enjoy a couple of minutes of sinuous movement and sharp passing. They work an opening through Cooper and Perez for Rodriguez to run on to a threaded pass in the box, to the left. He has Godoy peeling off his marker and free but lashes a shot from an acute angle into orbit. What a waste. 1:29PM 26 min England 2-0 Panama Young penalised for kicking Cooper where the sun doesn't shine as he raised his leg to control a bouncing ball. Henderson hooks a lob over the back four for Sterling who wins it but was offside. Ruben Loftus-Cheek has been booked for a foul just after the third kick-off. Here's Kane putting the penalty in something my son and his schoofriends call 'top bins': Goal: England ( 22 min ) Harry Kane buries England's second from the spot Credit: Jan Kruger/Getty Images) 1:25PM 24 min England 2-0 Panama Panama's strategy seems to be to inject as much needle into this as possible, after all sorts of niggly fouls and delaying tactics, they complain that England take too long in their celebrations, this after forestalling the taking of the pen by almost 150 seconds. 1:23PM 22 min England 2-0 Panama Blimey! That was some penalty. He almost ripped the net with his thunderfoot. 1:22PM GOAL!! England 2-0 Panama Yes he can, despite some shoving from Barcenas on Lingard on the 18-yard line and Gomez trying to spook the taker. Smashes it into the top-right corner. 1:21PM No offside So Kane will take the penalty. Can he score in his fifth successive match for England? 1:20PM England penalty! Lingard bundled over by Escobar and Torres as he ran down the inside-right channel. VAR is checking whether he was offside. 1:19PM 18 min England 1-0 Panama Torres kicks across Sterling's foot and catches his studs. He goes down screaming blue murder until the ref stops the game for his self-inflicted pain. England 1 - 0 Panama (John Stones, 8 min) 1:18PM 16 min England 1-0 Panama For the third time Panama exploit hesitation from Young and Maguire on the left of England's defence to dial up the speed and shift the ball inside quickly. Barcenas, striding forward down the inside-left channel, meets the pass from Murillo and bends a left-foot shot that has Pickford scrambling across goal and diving but it trims the outside of the side-netting. Close, though. 1:15PM 14 min England 1-0 Panama Dawdling by Torres invites Kane twice to have a run at the defence but he can't keep the ball under control and the opposition recover. Here's Stones' goal: Stones puts England into the lead Credit: Alex Morton/Getty Images 1:13PM 12 min England 1-0 Panama England lose possession cheaply from the free-kick, Maguire's poise and precision absent so far. Barcenas accelerates away from him and into the box. Walker clears up the first mess but England cause another that Panama's haste squanders. Walker's lunge stopped Perez tapping in at the back post. 1:11PM 11 min England 1-0 Panama Cooper lunges in at Lingard just past halfway and clatters into his shin pad malevolently. Yellow card. 1:10PM 9 min England 1-0 Panama Maguire and Kane were being grappled and obstructed with octopus arms but Stones wriggled free of his assailant and stooped to steer in a bullet header from Trippier's fine corner. 1:08PM GOAL! England 1-0 Panama John Stones buries a header from the penalty spot. 1:08PM 7 min England 0-0 Panama Good pass from Walker, diagonally out to the right flank, for Trippier's clever run and teh full-back wins a corner. 1:07PM 6 min England 0-0 Panama Panama's tempo has caught England on the hop a bit and Rodriguez, the victim of Henderson's foul, is felled again as they snap into tackles. The free-kick is taken too long and England come back upfield but at no great pace. 1:06PM 5 min England 0-0 Panama Panama take the free-kick into the box Kane heads clear and Barcenas wallops a 25m shot over the bar. Then Panama exploit the short goalkick and Maguire's poor pass to break down the left and find space for Godoy to shoot and he too thrashes it high and wide. Terrible finish but England invited the pressure with dozy play there. 1:04PM 3 min England 0-0 Panama After 90secs treatment Lingard is passed fit to continue and Panama restart, knocking it down the left where Henderson is penalised for a strong tackle. 1:03PM 2 min England 0-0 Panama And drags a pass back from the byline to Lingard whose first touch is clumsy and he has to go up to try to win it back in the air. Gomez elbows him in the mouth as they challenge for it but the referee deems it accidental. He did swing his arm back but he isn't penalised. 1:02PM 1 min England 0-0 Panama Panama 's huddle finally breaks up and England kick-off, attacking to the left and overloaded on the right flank. They roll it back to Stones and the three players on the right bomb forward but they play it short and move it to the left and back again. Trippier slips a pass past Davis and Loftus-Cheek rounds him. 12:59PM Two minutes to go The players chat and shake their legs. 12:57PM Some Panama fans and players Have gone for the full Dallaglio, moist eyed and bellowing it out. Tune. 12:56PM England stand with their arms across each other's shoulders For the national anthem and when it ends Harry Kane shouts 'Come on!, Come on!' There are far more Panama fans there than England's and they sing lustily along. 12:52PM Jesse Lingard Is being interviewed by Gabby Logan and is asked to do his Scouse and Cockney accents. The first is passable, the second risible. Pace Dr Johnson: It's not done well; but you are surprised to find it done at all. 12:47PM Pre-hydration routines This really should be the match shirt. Harry Kane takes a swig Credit: Maja Hitij - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images 12:45PM The temperature is heading up 34C Gareth Southgate says he will be using England's hydration strategy but there will be no official water breaks. On the Brexit scale 34C is 93F so he will have to employ his substitutes judiciously. "We think we will have the vast majority of the play, which is good in this heat, but we have to move the ball quickly and use width intelligently. The prize for today is to qualify with a game to spare but we have to concentrate on our performance. We need to be patient." 12:36PM Alan Shearer and Gary Lineker Have just embraced and jumped up and down, a la Chandler and Joey, in imitation of the excitement of the Panama World Cup panel. Them Shearer reveals that he has had a word with Harry Kane and told him to speak to the referee about holding at corners before they are taken. Now the BBC is using Joy Divsion's Day of the Lords for a montage. I applaud their taste but it's sacrilege to have people talking over it. Music is to be listened to, not deployed as background. 12:28PM Those starting XIs in black and white and their records England (3-1-4-1-1) Pickford; Walker, Stones, Maguire; Henderson; Trippier, Loftus-Cheek, Lingard, Young; Sterling; Kane. World Cup record: England Panama (4-5-1) Penedo; Murillo, R Torres, Escobar, Davis; Barcenas, Cooper, Gomez, Godoy, J Rodriguez; Perez. World Cup record: Panama Referee Gehad Grisha (History) 12:21PM England wear white, Panama red See how our Anna Wintour, Thom Gibbs, assesses the strips: World Cup kits ranked 12:20PM Spoiler alert Ninety minutes' ebb and flow can be a bit of a distraction for some. If you'd like to know the final score now, have a go on the Telegraph's ingenious AI forecaster: World Cup 2018 Simulator Single Game 12:08PM The heat is oppressive Jason Burt reports: The air conditioning in the England dressing room has been turned up to the maximum ahead of kick-off against Panama in an attempt to keep the players as cool as possible before the game starts. The players will also be given a fresh kit at half-time and iced towels to try and control their body temperatures with the temperatures on the pitch here in Nizhny Novgorod soaring towards the high 30 degrees celsius. The England medical staff are confident that the air conditioning in the dressing room will help although there may be a concern that the dry air could affect the breathing of the players, especially those susceptible to asthma. However the medics do not believe this will be a problem with dehumidifiers in use and, because the stadium is new, an air conditioning system which means it is ice cold inside the dressing room. In previous matches in such conditions England have also used fans inside the dressing room with players wearing ice vests as they warmed up but the more light-weight training gear is believed to be sufficient this time. Sometimes kit is also sprayed with a cooling agent and water to also help. A big issue will be hydration. Players will be urged to take on board as much fluid as possible and to hydrate at every opportunity during the match. The design of the stadium means that around half of the pitch will be in shade at kick-off but heat will undoubtedly be a factor. Gareth Southgate acknowledges the England supporters before the game Credit: REUTERS/Matthew Childs It may be roasting but Southgate's not taking off that weskit for anyone. Deux bieres et un pastis, garçon, s'il-vous plait. 12:04PM England make one change Ruben Loftus-Cheek comes in for Dele Alli and will partner Jesse Lingard in the midfield duo ahead of Jordan Henderson. Raheem Sterling starts and Marcus Rashford will continue as an impact sub. He's a terrific talent, Rashford, but I can see the sense in employing his impact as a substitute and his understanding of the opportunities the role provides - he seems more aware of them than Sterling and his better control in tight areas can turn tired defenders. If Sterling does his job and keeps running hard down the channels, Rashford can cash in later on. 11:59AM England team confirmed Here's the #ThreeLions teamsheet for today's game, as @rubey_lcheek comes in to replace @dele_official. �� pic.twitter.com/HztXwZSp0B— England (@England) June 24, 2018 11:58AM How England should go about their business today Here's our 140-cap columnist's take: What England must get right on and off the pitch to beat Panama and advance in this World Cup 11:55AM And another well-wisher Whose original intention was to retire at the end of this, his fourth World Cup, but wisely decided to call it a day 10 months early: Come on @England!! #ThreeLions— Wayne Rooney (@WayneRooney) June 24, 2018 11:52AM Panama avoid team sheet melodrama By naming an unchanged XI for today's match 24 hours early: Panama Penedo; Murillo, Roman Torres, Escobar, Davis; Barcenas, Cooper, Gomez, Godoy, Jose Luis Rodriguez; Perez. Substitutes Calderon, Cummings, Gabriel Torres, Diaz, Machado, Pimentel, Arroyo, Ovalle, Tejada, Avila, Baloy, Alex Rodriguez. Pointers from the Belgium game - Murillo is pretty good, Roman Torres is an ox, Barcenas a snapper and young Rodriguez is going to be a fine player. 11:46AM England fans begin to arrive at the stadium Flying the flag Credit: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire Robert Mendick and Wil Crisp report: "Travelling England fans have never been so middle-class. Nizhny Novgorod, a city on the Volga once so sensitive it was ‘closed’ to visitors in Soviet times, was laid siege on Saturday by a small army of England fans made up of lecturers, chartered accountants, investment bankers, company CEOs and the like. Read the rest of the article here ... [The game's gone] 11:39AM A man, a plan ... a palindrome Opposition research - plenty of troubling stuff that comes under that category in today's newspapers. This is far more wholesome: 16 things you didn't know about Panama 11:32AM England alumni reporting for duty This is what it is all about. Come on England!!!!!! ������ #ENGPANpic.twitter.com/3Gul6XnOh7— Ian Wright (@IanWright0) June 24, 2018 Arms up for a victory today! Come on @England �������������� ����‍♂ #bbcworldcup#russia2018#ENGPANpic.twitter.com/zOSzN5tISx— Alan Shearer (@alanshearer) June 24, 2018 The guys wearing @england shirt today feel like a group who have an understanding of what the manager wants from them & who believe in all he asks. A recipe for good days ahead. Let’s go ������ #england#worldcup#ENG#3lionspic.twitter.com/cRyonsKbcW— Rio Ferdinand (@rioferdy5) June 24, 2018 11:26AM Ruben Loftus-Cheek should make his first World Cup start Here's what Ruud Gullit had to say about him last September: "I always loved this guy, also when he was at Chelsea. I saw him playing yesterday as well. “He’s so influential and I think the more he plays, the better he gets. He knows how to play his game, he knows how to go forward. Ruben Loftus-Cheek is expected to start in place of Dele Alli Credit: David Ramos - FIFA “I want him in the centre, he needs to have the ball. Technical, strong, he is a fantastic player. He is the one who has the brains. “He’s a future England player, this one. I really believe in this boy, he’s a good player." Here's what Paul Hayward has to say about his selection: Ruben Loftus-Cheek can carry the flag for England's thwarted generation 11:13AM England missed a spectacular night in St Petersburg People watch fireworks and a brig with scarlet sails on the Neva River during the Scarlet Sails festivities marking school graduation in St Petersburg Credit: Photo/Dmitri Lovetsky 11:07AM Team news Matt Scott reports that England will make only one change rather than the anticipated two and that Raheem Sterling, scorer of 18 Premier League goals and provider of 11 Premier League assists en route to the title last year, has been retained in the starting XI. Read the full story here. Raheem Sterling will start his fourth World Cup match for England and second in succession in Nizhny Novgorod against Panama Credit: Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images 10:55AM England's qualification game In an intriguing twist to Wonderful World, Gareth Southgate adapted the words of Sam Cooke, Herb Alpert and Lou Adler to say history is not the important thing for this team’. Biology? Science book? The French they took? Word came there none. The only thing that matters, he says, is making their own history and they can certainly share an achievement today if they defeat Panama and join ‘Ron’s 22’ from 1982 and Sven’s band of Baden-Baden Charlie Big Potatoes from 2006 as England sides who have won their opening two group games at a World Cup. The England manager, by contrast with his players, is a student of history (no word on geography, trigonometry, algebra or what a slide rule is for). Southgate is known to the friends he grew up with at Crystal Palace as ‘'Nord’, a name bestowed on him by Wally Downes, but it is one that reflects the observational sharpness of a dressing-room wit. The young Gareth, with his eight O-levels and relatively affluent upbringing in Crawley, contrasted markedly with his more cocky and shrewdly streetwise South London contemporaries in the Palace youth team. His considered, unhurried way of speaking reminded Downes of Denis Norden, erstwhile co-writer of Take It From Here and a regular TV face hosting It’ll be Alright on the Night and speaking with his mouth full while selling Nuttall’s Mintoes. In an age when anyone in the game who spoke measuredly or enjoyed reading was instantly derided as ‘Prof’ or ‘Brains’, a descendant of the old Army contempt for ‘book learning’ characterised in It Ain’t Half Hot Mum’s ‘Mr La-Di-Dah Gunner Graham’, ‘Nord’ was a cut above. World Cup 2018 | The best of the Telegraph's coverage It stuck but his greenness did not. With the help of the goalkeeper Andy Woodman, the Hush Puppies and Ronnie Corbett golf sweaters that were so mocked behind his back were eased out and a lifelong friendship chronicled in a joint autobiography, Woody and Nord, nurtured them both. Southgate’s intelligence and application benefited him, too, and he became the youngest full-time captain in the country in 1993-94, the season he led Palace back into the Premier League. After Palace’s relegation in 1995, Southgate left in the summer for Aston Villa where he expected to join Andy Townsend and Ian Taylor in his usual central midfield role. So did Brian Little, the man who signed him for £2.5 million, but a fortnight later could not resist buying Mark Draper when Leicester finally agreed to sell. Little, an underrated, strangely neglected manager, put him between Ugo Ehiogu and Paul McGrath in a back-three, a move so successful that England called him up after only eight games in the position. Not what he seems: Gareth Southgate Credit: Matthias Hangst/Getty Images When Des Walker lost his aura of impregnability in the early Nineties, England reverted to type at the back, ‘head-on-a-stick’ centre-halfs, as Gary Lineker called them, or export maypoles, the static object around which foreigners would dance. Terry Venables wanted something more progressive, a centre-back who was comfortable moving out of defence to pick up opponents attacking from deeper positions. Southgate flourished in the role and, despite the penalty miss in the Euro 96 semi-final that will forever shadow him, continued to perform astutely in Glenn Hoddle’s sides, never better than during the 0-0 draw with Italy that secured qualification for the 1998 World Cup. His game continued to evolve well into his thirties, becoming as accomplished an orthodox central defender in a back-four as he had been in a three and it is a testament to his quality and durability that when Rio Ferdinand was banned for missing a drugs test in 2003, Sir Alex Ferguson immediately tried to sign the 33-year-old from Middlesbrough. How England can get the job done against physical Panama Looking back it seems obvious that he was born to manage but given that he has moved at the Football Association from Head of Elite Development to Under-21 head coach to England manager, it is odd to recall that he succeeded Steve McClaren at the Riverside without a Pro Licence, in the face of much opposition from the League Managers Association, and had to qualify on the job. Southgate looks the model of a modern coach, even down to the DH Lawrence beard - cosmopolitan, flexible and cerebral. Yet there are echoes too of Malcolm Allison and Dave Sexton, whose undervalued toughness complemented their sprightly creativity and aptitude for teaching. But don’t be fooled by appearance. Twice in the past he has identified that inspiration is key - first when he witheringly said of Eriksson’s half-time team-talk when England had just conceded a stoppage-time equaliser in the 2002 World Cup quarter-final: “We were expecting Winston Churchill and instead got Iain Duncan Smith.” And then again in 2006 when advocating a successor for Eriksson: “I want an Englishman who’s going to say: ‘Remember Churchill.’” If anyone in Nizhny Novgorod hears strains of ‘We shall fight on the beaches’ delivered in the extraordinary, deliberate tones of Denis Norden this afternoon, there can be only one culprit: a man who continues to defy all preconceptions. As for Panama, who fought bravely against Belgium, kettled them and hobbled them with some cynical and wild tackles, the 30C heat in the city once known as Gorky after Maxim, though Sorrento and Capri had similar claims over the writer, should have a greater toll on much older legs. They are a veteran side, a tough side and play with genuinely intimidating muscular athleticism. Any thoughts that they may trial a new approach here have been thoroughly debunked by their veteran defensive midfielder Gabriel Gomez. “We are men, we are aggressive,” he said. “Football is played with aggression, with desire. We are a team that knows how to play and when we have to fight, we fight.” For all that, they are pretty enlightened technically if not always tactically and can open up a defence with decent movement - at no great pace - and some inspired passing angles. Against Belgium they were unable to commit runners consistently to help out their lone 37-year-old forward and settled for an attritional scrap that frustrated world-class talents such as Eden Hazard and Kevin De Bruyne and made them look pedestrian. It took a terrific strike from Dries Mertens to prise Panama’s vice-grip around their throats early in the second half after a stultifying first 45 minutes. Class will out but England and their supporters will have to be patient.
Group standings and permutations You are the VAR: Think you can do better than the World Cup referees? Test yourself here Get Telegraph Football WhatsApp for in-match analysis and talking points throughout the World Cup Jim White: Fantastic fans and where to find them at World Cup 2018 ​There have been so many times when England were such a tactically flat, stressed-out bunch that they could squeeze the joy out of battering even the meekest opposition, so against Panama you had to rub your eyes at the general levels of fun being had. This was England as we rarely see them, the game won in the first half, a place in the second round with a match to spare and a general feeling of abandon that anything could happen. Harry Kane notched only the third World Cup hat-trick in English history, and then there was an unfamiliar competence observed on the basics of the game, especially two set-piece goals created for John Stones that demonstrated actual planning. Everything that could go right for England did although they never felt lucky and they chuckled at Kane’s third that ricocheted off his heel while he was looking the other way. Somewhere in the Moscow outskirts one could only guess at the grand disdain Cristiano Ronaldo will have felt at being supplanted as the tournament’s top scorer in that manner. It hardly needs saying that this was England’s biggest World Cup win but it was also World Cup football as enjoyment rather than the usual torture. Afterwards, Gareth Southgate conjured up the modern English pastoral when he said he was glad to have delivered goals for a public watching at home on a “warm Sunday afternoon”. A great vision of barbecues ablaze, televisions repositioned and six times a boozy roar across the back gardens. Out in the scorching mid-afternoon of Nizhny Novgorod, an industrial goliath east of Moscow, England looked strangely at ease in a foreign land: with the heat, with the pressure of being the favourites, with the rhythm of tournament football. They once got to half-time against Andorra in Barcelona in a Euro 2008 qualifier without sticking a goal past the part-timers of the ski resort nation and yet this time they had buried the first within nine minutes. Later the Panama coach would excuse his players their tactical naivety and their relentless corner routine grappling by proclaiming that the nation had made history with their first World Cup goal from substitute Felipe Badoy. “We are virgins!” Hernan Dario Gomez said. “We have been born before the due date! We are debutants. We have to celebrate what we have done.” Yet the team ranked 55th in the world edged out the United States on their way to qualification. What mattered was the performance was good from England, and the greediness with which they helped themselves to five before half-time showed a little frission of pleasure at being the bullies for once. Southgate called it “ruthlessness” and there was something very smart about the way in which Stones swept through the pack unmarked to head in the first while Panama stuck doggedly to their gameplan of trying to spear-tackle Harry Maguire at every dead ball situation. England permutations | Who could they face in knockout stages? Southgate credited his strikers’ coach Allan Russell for the finessing of set-pieces and the Scot has done good work, especially with the fourth that was worked back and forth across the box before Stones nodded in his second. Jesse Lingard won the penalty for Kane’s first, and curled in the third after an exchange with Raheem Sterling. Kane won his second penalty himself just before half-time with Anibal Godoy trying to coerce him in the penalty area with all the subtlety of a new pub landlord breaking up his first fight. Both Kane penalties were dispatched with a viciousness that spoke of a confidence in that particular art - which is also unusual when it comes to England. They went in five goals up. The Panama captain Roman Torres, a big man who also nurtured a Maguire preoccupation in the first half, beckoned his team-mates together for a chat on the pitch. There was a conversation, although sadly not the full Phil Brown routine. Kieran Trippier departed in the second half with a minor strain but he had done enough to underline his new pre-eminence from dead balls. It was he who picked out Stones from a corner for the first, and Trippier then found Lingard before he was fouled for the first of two penalties. Southgate made a place for his understudy right-back in this new formation and Trippier’s range of delivery ticks all the boxes. The last group game against Belgium in Kaliningrad on Thursday, with its full complement of England fans in the Russian exclave on the Gulf of Finland will not be the decisive match it could have been. Southgate said later his preoccupation was “squad harmony” and giving chances to those who have not played much, which will include the three unused outfield players, Gary Cahill, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Phil Jones. There is the tricky question of whether first or second place in Group G will open up the better route for England, identically matched with Belgium and in first place by virtue of disciplinary record. With Romelu Lukaku nursing an injury and Kane potentially rested it could yet be a strange hand of poker that both managers play. England have been here before, hedging their bets on the last group game and came out the worse for it. That was at Euro 2016 when the momentum of a win over Wales in the second group game was squandered when Roy Hodgson rested key players for the final game against Slovakia. England were pitched into a fateful second round tie against Iceland rather than Northern Ireland and the rest is so many bad memories. Both Southgate and Roberto Martinez have said they want to win the game although we wait to see. Kane’s third cannoned off him, a Ruben Loftus-Cheek shot heading in another direction, and Southgate immediately replaced him with Jamie Vardy. Fabian Delph played his first minutes in place of Lingard and Trippier was later substituted for Danny Rose. This is the shape of the England team that is likely to play against Belgium. The last time England showed anything like this promise in a tournament, at Euro 2004, it was the third group game that they lost Rooney to injury so perhaps caution will be Southgate’s guiding light. Even so, they lit a fuse against lowly Panama. Unlike so many of their predecessors at tournaments, England feel part of this one - scoring goals, forcing others to notice them. When he took the job on a permanent basis, Southgate recalled watching a highlights reel of the 2014 World Cup at a Fifa draw and noticing with horror that not once did it feature England, so meagre had their efforts been at that tournament. Already England are on the highlights reel for 2018. They have scored eight goals in two games and have the tournament’s current top striker. Having hit this kind of pace it would be a shame to see it peter out against Belgium before they embark on the second round. They might not have the best squad at the tournament but they have some form at last and the confidence flowing from that is of the kind we have not seen in years. 3:57PM Well, this is something Even if Loftus-Cheek's pass was really a shot: 25 - There were 25 uninterrupted passes played by England before their 6th goal today; the longest sequence for a World Cup goal since 1966 & one more pass than Esteban Cambiasso's goal for Argentina v Serbia in 2006 (24). Fortunate.#Eng#EngPan#WorldCuppic.twitter.com/pBnHr1EEKr— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) June 24, 2018 3:55PM How they stand 3:46PM The captain speaks again Professional. Clinical. Bring on Belgium and the knockout rounds. �� #ThreeLions#WorldCuppic.twitter.com/QXSsHNoejq— Harry Kane (@HKane) June 24, 2018 3:24PM Gareth Southgate speaks "I didn’t like the performance. Well, I didn’t like the start, and I didn’t like the goal at the end, but I guess the bits in the middle were pretty good. I think we were a little bit anxious at the beginning. We played some really good stuff after 35, 40 minutes. "The second half is difficult. We talked about the importance of one more goal to be top of the group, which is why the goal at the end is disappointing. But it’s really rewarding to see how well they’re playing, and how much they’re enjoying their football. "Big moments for Jess Lingard today, of course great for the captain to get his hat-trick which made it easier to take him off. [Was he OK about coming off?] Probably not but I've got a group to look after and there were some heavy tackles flyinhg about. "We said before the game, no more yellow cards. That was a key part of the second half, definitely. "We want to keep momentum, so we’ll have to have a think about the team we want to put out [against Belgium]. There’s an opportunity as well that players that need a match, but also we want to keep winning football matches. It’s a nice decision to have." 3:21PM Breaking news about England's anthem for the Belgium game It's been changed to this for Messrs Walker, Stones, Maguire, Rose, Delph and Vardy: 3:18PM Ruben Loftus-Cheek has a word "To win 6-1 in the World Cup is fantastic. I’m delighted with that. I think we want to put on a good performance for the fans, but also for ourselves. "For such a young captain [Harry is] so vocal. I think everyone respects him massively, what he’s done for Tottenham and bringing it in for England. Ruben Loftus-Cheek made his first World Cup start and it was his shot that Harry Kane deflected in for his hat-trick Credit: AP Photo/Alastair Grant "We work on set pieces a lot, and to see it coming good in the games when we prepare so much for it. It’s such a big factor in games, we put in so much work and we’re glad that it keeps coming out on the pitch." 3:14PM Ashley Young takes the mic "The togetherness I’ve seen is incredible. Off the pitch everybody mixes with each other. Everybody wants the ball, nobody shies away from the ball. We’ve got to keep on doing that, keep showing our confidence and keep playing the way we have. The start of something good Credit: JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images "We’ve just got to keep our feet on the ground and keep working hard in training. This could be the start of something good. 3:10PM Relive the match in a minute 3:09PM Here are Ben Rumsby's ratings England vs Panama player ratings 3:08PM Jesse Lingard speaks I thrive in that role. It's great to be around the lads. There's a great team spirit. The confidence is flowing, I don't see why not [we can't go all the way] but we take each game as it comes. [You don't seem very exuberant] I'm always like this in interviews. 3:06PM Opta's statistical pointers England have won both of their opening two group stage games at a World Cup tournament for the third time, also doing so in 1982 and 2006. This was England’s biggest ever win in a major tournament match (World Cup and European Championships). This was only the fifth occasion a side had scored five goals before half-time in a World Cup match, and the first since Germany did so against Brazil in the 2014 semi-final. England scored as many goals in this match as they had in their previous seven World Cup matches combined (6). Only in 1966 (11) have England scored more goals in a single World Cup tournament than they have in 2018 (8, same as 1954 and 1990). John Stones became the first England defender to score two goals in a single World Cup match. Harry Kane is only the third England player to score a hat-trick in a World Cup match, after Geoff Hurst vs Germany in the 1966 final and Gary Lineker vs Poland in 1986. England striker Harry Kane is the first player to have scored at least twice in both of his first two ever World Cup appearances since Poland’s Grzegorz Lato in 1974. Lato went on to win the Golden Boot at that tournament. England’s Harry Kane is now the leading scorer at the 2018 World Cup with five goals. He’s scored with all five of his shots on target in the tournament. 3:02PM Harry Kane speaks Fantastic. So proud of the boys. Just enjoying being here.They started pretty well but we've been working on the setpieces and it all came together. The match ball is one of my lucky ones but I'll take it. It's been brilliant, both sets of fans. Ours have always been great but it's what the World Cup is all about. We're not going to get too far ahead of ourselves but you have to believe. There's a long way to go but we have to stick to our game plan. A bit disappointed to concede at the end. We'll go into Belgium looking for a win but let's see what happens. Now we'll rest, recover and get ready for next week. 2:57PM Here's your chance to rate the players England player rater 2:53PM Full time England 6-1 Panama A hat-trick for Kane, two for Stones and a screamer from Lingard give England their record victory in tournament football. They led 5-0 at half-time and then squeezed the game, harboured their reserves and celebrate a famous victory. 2:51PM 90+2 min England 6-1 Panama The game has pretty much petered out in the second half but I suppose that is evidence of clever game management and resource protection by England. Lingard, a picture of joy, juggles a plastic cup with his feet while sitting on the bench. 2:49PM 90 min England 6-1 Panama Young's cross is flicked on towards the centre of goal and Stones, on a hat-trick, just fails to connect with a stabbed finish. Penedo gobbles it up gratefully. We'll have four more minutes. 2:48PM 89 min England 6-1 Panama There are horns and cow bells contributing to the cacophony. England have a free kick about 35m out, left of centre. Young will take. 2:46PM 87 min England 6-1 Panama Vardy sprints down the right, whitewash on the soles of his feet, and beats Davis. He fires over a deep cross outside the box for Delph who has to jump high to trap it, which he accomplishes but lands awkwardly so mis-hist his pass. 2:44PM 86 min England 6-1 Panama 'Nothing wrong with a boring second half,' says Danny Murphy and, of course, it makes sense. Rashford for Lingard, though, would have been something worth seeing. 2:42PM 84 min England 6-1 Panama England pass it around slowly around the back - killing time and the game understandably. Vardy has hardly touched the ball. 2:41PM 82 min England 6-1 Panama Sterling tacks in from the left flank on to his right foot and sends a curving shot whistling past the far post. Hit very sweetly on the instep but not enough whip to bring it back in. 2:39PM 80 min England 6-1 Panama The goal was set up by one sub and scored by the other. Henderson, acting captain, gives the players a rollicking and tells them to step it back up. England 6 - 1 Panama (Felipe Baloy, 78 min) 2:38PM 78 min England 6-1 Panama And that goal is greeted more raucously than any of the preceding six by the crowd who have embraced their hordes of Panamanian guests. 2:37PM GOAL!! England 6-1 Panama Baloy - the 37-year-old - does what Torres didn't, connects with a sliding half-volley, this lone from about 8m when England's offside trap falls apart from a free-kick on the left. Poor defending. Crisp finish. 2:35PM 75 min England 6-0 Panama Rodriguez sprints between Walker and Young and gets to it first to cross. It's overhit but Rose lets it go out for a corner on the right nit knowing if there was anyone behind him. They whip in the corner and it's glanced on to the back post. Torres telescopes out his right leg and lunges to tap it in from a metre but bludgeons it wide. 2:33PM 74 min England 6-0 Panama He chips it to the far post where Maguire wins it and knocks it back across. Another touch sends it out to the 18-yard line where Henderson, shouting Loftus-Cheek to 'leave it!' hooks a roundhouse volley - a 'Ronnie Whelan' for older readers, and hooks it powerfully round the left post. 2:31PM 72 min England 6-0 Panama Ashley Young, now playing on the right, takes a free-kick from the left. England's sixth came from an inadvertent deflection off Harry Kane Credit: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images 2:28PM 68 min England 6-0 Panama Murillo loses the ball on the right and it allows time for substitutions. Rose replaces Trippier who took a knock. That's six Tykes. For Panama Barcenas and Perez go off, Baloy and Arroyo come on. 2:26PM 65 min England 6-0 Panama Barcenas darts down the inside right channel and has a chance from a tight angle but Pickford is out smartly to blocktackle him and Stones and Walker deal with the ball comfortably. Here comes another Yorkshireman in Rose. White shirts, white rose. 2:24PM 63 min England 6-0 Panama Harry Kane is now the leading scorer in the tournament and the third England World Cup hat-trick man after Sir Geoff Hurst and Gary Lineker. 2:22PM 60 min England 6-0 Panama No, the goal stands. Loftus-Cheek's shot hits Kane's heel and balloons over the keeper. That;s his last touch. Kane is going off to be replaced by Vardy and Lingard will be replaced by Delph. This is not England any more. It's Yorkshire v Panama. England 6 - 0 Panama (Harry Kane, 62 min) 2:20PM GOAL!! England 6-0 Panama Kane has his hat-trick. VAR might scrub this off, though. 2:19PM 60 min England 5-0 Panama Panama move the ball to the right and back again as England set themselves in compact defensive lines to win the ball back. Stones has three runners upfield but doesn't make the right choice. 2:17PM 58 min England 5-0 Panama Panama continue to engage in some after-tackle filth, hands in faces, sly kicks and digs. 2:16PM 56 min England 5-0 Panama Pickford taps it to Walker who plays it up to Henderson and he gives Kane a hare to chase with a long ball up the inside-right channel. Escobar, who has improved, gets there first. 2:15PM 55 min England 5-0 Panama No criticism that England have not resumed as they finished the half. They're trying to find their rhythm. 2:13PM 54 min England 5-0 Panama Fingers burnt by the penalty, they keep their hands largely to themselves this time. But Trippier's centre is well-defended. Possession: England vs Panama 2:12PM 52 min England 5-0 Panama With all the caveats about how useless Panama have been defensively and in the final third, Sterling is playing very well, adopting some excellent positions and playing some penetrating passes. England have a throw on the right and give it to Loftus-Cheek who tries to round Escobar by the byline but is tackled. England corner. Panama;s defenders are warned again. 2:09PM 50 min England 5-0 Panama Kane has the ball on halfway and Sterling hurtles out of the blocks beyond the defence when Kane releases it. Brilliant run but Kane's pass was too heavy. They had beaten the offside trap but the throughball was too close to Penedo who pelted out to win the race with Sterling. 2:07PM 48 min England 5-0 Panama But Barcenas misjudges Perez's run and plays the wrong pass into the box. England pounce on it and set off on a rapid counter. 2:06PM 47 min England 5-0 Panama Panama are passing the ball around slowly, keen, one thinks, not to be humiliated further. They inject some pace now and work a triangle up the right. 2:05PM 46 min England 5-0 Panama England attack up the right, Loftus-Cheek and Trippier combining well and crossing to the back post for Kane who beat Torres but cannot squeeze an attempt on goal. 2:02PM Praise indeed What can i say, unbelievable! #WorldCup— Sir Geoff Hurst (@TheGeoffHurst) June 24, 2018 1:58PM John Stones's second and Harry Kane's second John Stones scores his second England goal Credit: AP Photo/Victor Caivano And here's Harry Kane's second penalty. He went the same way but even if the keeper had it would have amputated his right hand at the wrist. Harry Kane scores his fourth World Cup goal of 2018 Credit: REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado 1:55PM Half-time reading Here's a gallery of the worst teams at international tournaments. Here's Lingard's goal and Sterling deserves great praise for his cute pass: Jesse Lingard puts England 3-0 up Credit: REUTERS/Matthew Childs Jesse Lingard celebrates after scoring his first World Cup goal Credit: AP Photo/Matthias Schrader 1:50PM Sorry went too early - it's only half-time of course Here's Paul Hayward on the first goal: "Grappling in the box looks clever until you ignore the runner, as Panama did there with John Stones, who darted between wrestling matches to put England in front.@ 1:49PM Half-time What a terrific first-half performance form England. They lead a World Cup game 5-0 and there's still 45 minutes to come. If Panama finish with 11 men I'm a Dutchman. 1:48PM 45+1 min England 5-0 Panama Maguire is smacked in the mouth by Cooper who swings his arm as they leap. That looked deliberate. Panama are losing all discipline and the plot. Looks like they'll go down swinging, literally. Dirty devils. 1:47PM 44 min England 5-0 Panama So Kane joins Lukaku and Ronaldo on four goals apiece. Goal: England ( 45 + 1 min ) 1:46PM GOAL! England 5-0 Panama Escobar and Torres pantomime disapproval at the penalty and are booked which eats up more time for Kane to settle himself. But he isn't fazed. He torpedoes it into the same place. 1:44PM England penalty! Kane is being grappled at a corner. The referee warns the players not to do it three times but they don't listen. Godoy tries to bodyslam Kane. 1:43PM 40 min England 4-0 Panama Amazing. Henderson receives the pass on the edge of the penalty area back to goal and hooks a cross to Kane beyond the right post. He nods it across to Sterling whose header from a couple of metres is saved by Penedo and Stones is first to the rebound on the right and forces his header into the roof of the net. England 4 - 0 Panama (John Stones, 40 min) 1:40PM GOAL!! England 4-0 Panama John Stones from a perfectly-executed free-kick routine. 1:39PM 36 min England 3-0 Panama Lingard, battered from pillar to post for the first 15 minutes, glides in from the left to take Sterling's stabbed pass and bends a venomous shot from the left side of the D around the onrushing, panicking defenders and into the top right corner of the goal. This is a bit like England v Poland from 1986. England 3 - 0 Panama (Jesse Lingard, 36 min) Goal: England ( 36 min ) 1:36PM GOAL!! England 3-0 Panama Lingard with a lovely right-foot shot from 20m, steered into the top corner. 1:35PM 33 min England 2-0 Panama Lingard bails Maguire out at the back with a diligent and dogged tracking run after Maguire loses his position. He has many attributes Maguire but he needs too screw the nut. There are too many errors. 1:34PM 30 min England 2-0 Panama England free-kick 35m out. Trippier will take. The break affords Murphy and Mowbray some time for golf banter. Trippier strikes it well, curling it deep beyond the back post where it is met by Maguire's run. He heads it back across goal and over the other post. He should have squared it to his team-mates in the middle or gone for goal but it turned into neither one thing or the other. Harry Kane strikes the penalty Credit: JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images 1:30PM 28 min England 2-0 Panama Much better from Panama who enjoy a couple of minutes of sinuous movement and sharp passing. They work an opening through Cooper and Perez for Rodriguez to run on to a threaded pass in the box, to the left. He has Godoy peeling off his marker and free but lashes a shot from an acute angle into orbit. What a waste. 1:29PM 26 min England 2-0 Panama Young penalised for kicking Cooper where the sun doesn't shine as he raised his leg to control a bouncing ball. Henderson hooks a lob over the back four for Sterling who wins it but was offside. Ruben Loftus-Cheek has been booked for a foul just after the third kick-off. Here's Kane putting the penalty in something my son and his schoofriends call 'top bins': Goal: England ( 22 min ) Harry Kane buries England's second from the spot Credit: Jan Kruger/Getty Images) 1:25PM 24 min England 2-0 Panama Panama's strategy seems to be to inject as much needle into this as possible, after all sorts of niggly fouls and delaying tactics, they complain that England take too long in their celebrations, this after forestalling the taking of the pen by almost 150 seconds. 1:23PM 22 min England 2-0 Panama Blimey! That was some penalty. He almost ripped the net with his thunderfoot. 1:22PM GOAL!! England 2-0 Panama Yes he can, despite some shoving from Barcenas on Lingard on the 18-yard line and Gomez trying to spook the taker. Smashes it into the top-right corner. 1:21PM No offside So Kane will take the penalty. Can he score in his fifth successive match for England? 1:20PM England penalty! Lingard bundled over by Escobar and Torres as he ran down the inside-right channel. VAR is checking whether he was offside. 1:19PM 18 min England 1-0 Panama Torres kicks across Sterling's foot and catches his studs. He goes down screaming blue murder until the ref stops the game for his self-inflicted pain. England 1 - 0 Panama (John Stones, 8 min) 1:18PM 16 min England 1-0 Panama For the third time Panama exploit hesitation from Young and Maguire on the left of England's defence to dial up the speed and shift the ball inside quickly. Barcenas, striding forward down the inside-left channel, meets the pass from Murillo and bends a left-foot shot that has Pickford scrambling across goal and diving but it trims the outside of the side-netting. Close, though. 1:15PM 14 min England 1-0 Panama Dawdling by Torres invites Kane twice to have a run at the defence but he can't keep the ball under control and the opposition recover. Here's Stones' goal: Stones puts England into the lead Credit: Alex Morton/Getty Images 1:13PM 12 min England 1-0 Panama England lose possession cheaply from the free-kick, Maguire's poise and precision absent so far. Barcenas accelerates away from him and into the box. Walker clears up the first mess but England cause another that Panama's haste squanders. Walker's lunge stopped Perez tapping in at the back post. 1:11PM 11 min England 1-0 Panama Cooper lunges in at Lingard just past halfway and clatters into his shin pad malevolently. Yellow card. 1:10PM 9 min England 1-0 Panama Maguire and Kane were being grappled and obstructed with octopus arms but Stones wriggled free of his assailant and stooped to steer in a bullet header from Trippier's fine corner. 1:08PM GOAL! England 1-0 Panama John Stones buries a header from the penalty spot. 1:08PM 7 min England 0-0 Panama Good pass from Walker, diagonally out to the right flank, for Trippier's clever run and teh full-back wins a corner. 1:07PM 6 min England 0-0 Panama Panama's tempo has caught England on the hop a bit and Rodriguez, the victim of Henderson's foul, is felled again as they snap into tackles. The free-kick is taken too long and England come back upfield but at no great pace. 1:06PM 5 min England 0-0 Panama Panama take the free-kick into the box Kane heads clear and Barcenas wallops a 25m shot over the bar. Then Panama exploit the short goalkick and Maguire's poor pass to break down the left and find space for Godoy to shoot and he too thrashes it high and wide. Terrible finish but England invited the pressure with dozy play there. 1:04PM 3 min England 0-0 Panama After 90secs treatment Lingard is passed fit to continue and Panama restart, knocking it down the left where Henderson is penalised for a strong tackle. 1:03PM 2 min England 0-0 Panama And drags a pass back from the byline to Lingard whose first touch is clumsy and he has to go up to try to win it back in the air. Gomez elbows him in the mouth as they challenge for it but the referee deems it accidental. He did swing his arm back but he isn't penalised. 1:02PM 1 min England 0-0 Panama Panama 's huddle finally breaks up and England kick-off, attacking to the left and overloaded on the right flank. They roll it back to Stones and the three players on the right bomb forward but they play it short and move it to the left and back again. Trippier slips a pass past Davis and Loftus-Cheek rounds him. 12:59PM Two minutes to go The players chat and shake their legs. 12:57PM Some Panama fans and players Have gone for the full Dallaglio, moist eyed and bellowing it out. Tune. 12:56PM England stand with their arms across each other's shoulders For the national anthem and when it ends Harry Kane shouts 'Come on!, Come on!' There are far more Panama fans there than England's and they sing lustily along. 12:52PM Jesse Lingard Is being interviewed by Gabby Logan and is asked to do his Scouse and Cockney accents. The first is passable, the second risible. Pace Dr Johnson: It's not done well; but you are surprised to find it done at all. 12:47PM Pre-hydration routines This really should be the match shirt. Harry Kane takes a swig Credit: Maja Hitij - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images 12:45PM The temperature is heading up 34C Gareth Southgate says he will be using England's hydration strategy but there will be no official water breaks. On the Brexit scale 34C is 93F so he will have to employ his substitutes judiciously. "We think we will have the vast majority of the play, which is good in this heat, but we have to move the ball quickly and use width intelligently. The prize for today is to qualify with a game to spare but we have to concentrate on our performance. We need to be patient." 12:36PM Alan Shearer and Gary Lineker Have just embraced and jumped up and down, a la Chandler and Joey, in imitation of the excitement of the Panama World Cup panel. Them Shearer reveals that he has had a word with Harry Kane and told him to speak to the referee about holding at corners before they are taken. Now the BBC is using Joy Divsion's Day of the Lords for a montage. I applaud their taste but it's sacrilege to have people talking over it. Music is to be listened to, not deployed as background. 12:28PM Those starting XIs in black and white and their records England (3-1-4-1-1) Pickford; Walker, Stones, Maguire; Henderson; Trippier, Loftus-Cheek, Lingard, Young; Sterling; Kane. World Cup record: England Panama (4-5-1) Penedo; Murillo, R Torres, Escobar, Davis; Barcenas, Cooper, Gomez, Godoy, J Rodriguez; Perez. World Cup record: Panama Referee Gehad Grisha (History) 12:21PM England wear white, Panama red See how our Anna Wintour, Thom Gibbs, assesses the strips: World Cup kits ranked 12:20PM Spoiler alert Ninety minutes' ebb and flow can be a bit of a distraction for some. If you'd like to know the final score now, have a go on the Telegraph's ingenious AI forecaster: World Cup 2018 Simulator Single Game 12:08PM The heat is oppressive Jason Burt reports: The air conditioning in the England dressing room has been turned up to the maximum ahead of kick-off against Panama in an attempt to keep the players as cool as possible before the game starts. The players will also be given a fresh kit at half-time and iced towels to try and control their body temperatures with the temperatures on the pitch here in Nizhny Novgorod soaring towards the high 30 degrees celsius. The England medical staff are confident that the air conditioning in the dressing room will help although there may be a concern that the dry air could affect the breathing of the players, especially those susceptible to asthma. However the medics do not believe this will be a problem with dehumidifiers in use and, because the stadium is new, an air conditioning system which means it is ice cold inside the dressing room. In previous matches in such conditions England have also used fans inside the dressing room with players wearing ice vests as they warmed up but the more light-weight training gear is believed to be sufficient this time. Sometimes kit is also sprayed with a cooling agent and water to also help. A big issue will be hydration. Players will be urged to take on board as much fluid as possible and to hydrate at every opportunity during the match. The design of the stadium means that around half of the pitch will be in shade at kick-off but heat will undoubtedly be a factor. Gareth Southgate acknowledges the England supporters before the game Credit: REUTERS/Matthew Childs It may be roasting but Southgate's not taking off that weskit for anyone. Deux bieres et un pastis, garçon, s'il-vous plait. 12:04PM England make one change Ruben Loftus-Cheek comes in for Dele Alli and will partner Jesse Lingard in the midfield duo ahead of Jordan Henderson. Raheem Sterling starts and Marcus Rashford will continue as an impact sub. He's a terrific talent, Rashford, but I can see the sense in employing his impact as a substitute and his understanding of the opportunities the role provides - he seems more aware of them than Sterling and his better control in tight areas can turn tired defenders. If Sterling does his job and keeps running hard down the channels, Rashford can cash in later on. 11:59AM England team confirmed Here's the #ThreeLions teamsheet for today's game, as @rubey_lcheek comes in to replace @dele_official. �� pic.twitter.com/HztXwZSp0B— England (@England) June 24, 2018 11:58AM How England should go about their business today Here's our 140-cap columnist's take: What England must get right on and off the pitch to beat Panama and advance in this World Cup 11:55AM And another well-wisher Whose original intention was to retire at the end of this, his fourth World Cup, but wisely decided to call it a day 10 months early: Come on @England!! #ThreeLions— Wayne Rooney (@WayneRooney) June 24, 2018 11:52AM Panama avoid team sheet melodrama By naming an unchanged XI for today's match 24 hours early: Panama Penedo; Murillo, Roman Torres, Escobar, Davis; Barcenas, Cooper, Gomez, Godoy, Jose Luis Rodriguez; Perez. Substitutes Calderon, Cummings, Gabriel Torres, Diaz, Machado, Pimentel, Arroyo, Ovalle, Tejada, Avila, Baloy, Alex Rodriguez. Pointers from the Belgium game - Murillo is pretty good, Roman Torres is an ox, Barcenas a snapper and young Rodriguez is going to be a fine player. 11:46AM England fans begin to arrive at the stadium Flying the flag Credit: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire Robert Mendick and Wil Crisp report: "Travelling England fans have never been so middle-class. Nizhny Novgorod, a city on the Volga once so sensitive it was ‘closed’ to visitors in Soviet times, was laid siege on Saturday by a small army of England fans made up of lecturers, chartered accountants, investment bankers, company CEOs and the like. Read the rest of the article here ... [The game's gone] 11:39AM A man, a plan ... a palindrome Opposition research - plenty of troubling stuff that comes under that category in today's newspapers. This is far more wholesome: 16 things you didn't know about Panama 11:32AM England alumni reporting for duty This is what it is all about. Come on England!!!!!! ������ #ENGPANpic.twitter.com/3Gul6XnOh7— Ian Wright (@IanWright0) June 24, 2018 Arms up for a victory today! Come on @England �������������� ����‍♂ #bbcworldcup#russia2018#ENGPANpic.twitter.com/zOSzN5tISx— Alan Shearer (@alanshearer) June 24, 2018 The guys wearing @england shirt today feel like a group who have an understanding of what the manager wants from them & who believe in all he asks. A recipe for good days ahead. Let’s go ������ #england#worldcup#ENG#3lionspic.twitter.com/cRyonsKbcW— Rio Ferdinand (@rioferdy5) June 24, 2018 11:26AM Ruben Loftus-Cheek should make his first World Cup start Here's what Ruud Gullit had to say about him last September: "I always loved this guy, also when he was at Chelsea. I saw him playing yesterday as well. “He’s so influential and I think the more he plays, the better he gets. He knows how to play his game, he knows how to go forward. Ruben Loftus-Cheek is expected to start in place of Dele Alli Credit: David Ramos - FIFA “I want him in the centre, he needs to have the ball. Technical, strong, he is a fantastic player. He is the one who has the brains. “He’s a future England player, this one. I really believe in this boy, he’s a good player." Here's what Paul Hayward has to say about his selection: Ruben Loftus-Cheek can carry the flag for England's thwarted generation 11:13AM England missed a spectacular night in St Petersburg People watch fireworks and a brig with scarlet sails on the Neva River during the Scarlet Sails festivities marking school graduation in St Petersburg Credit: Photo/Dmitri Lovetsky 11:07AM Team news Matt Scott reports that England will make only one change rather than the anticipated two and that Raheem Sterling, scorer of 18 Premier League goals and provider of 11 Premier League assists en route to the title last year, has been retained in the starting XI. Read the full story here. Raheem Sterling will start his fourth World Cup match for England and second in succession in Nizhny Novgorod against Panama Credit: Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images 10:55AM England's qualification game In an intriguing twist to Wonderful World, Gareth Southgate adapted the words of Sam Cooke, Herb Alpert and Lou Adler to say history is not the important thing for this team’. Biology? Science book? The French they took? Word came there none. The only thing that matters, he says, is making their own history and they can certainly share an achievement today if they defeat Panama and join ‘Ron’s 22’ from 1982 and Sven’s band of Baden-Baden Charlie Big Potatoes from 2006 as England sides who have won their opening two group games at a World Cup. The England manager, by contrast with his players, is a student of history (no word on geography, trigonometry, algebra or what a slide rule is for). Southgate is known to the friends he grew up with at Crystal Palace as ‘'Nord’, a name bestowed on him by Wally Downes, but it is one that reflects the observational sharpness of a dressing-room wit. The young Gareth, with his eight O-levels and relatively affluent upbringing in Crawley, contrasted markedly with his more cocky and shrewdly streetwise South London contemporaries in the Palace youth team. His considered, unhurried way of speaking reminded Downes of Denis Norden, erstwhile co-writer of Take It From Here and a regular TV face hosting It’ll be Alright on the Night and speaking with his mouth full while selling Nuttall’s Mintoes. In an age when anyone in the game who spoke measuredly or enjoyed reading was instantly derided as ‘Prof’ or ‘Brains’, a descendant of the old Army contempt for ‘book learning’ characterised in It Ain’t Half Hot Mum’s ‘Mr La-Di-Dah Gunner Graham’, ‘Nord’ was a cut above. World Cup 2018 | The best of the Telegraph's coverage It stuck but his greenness did not. With the help of the goalkeeper Andy Woodman, the Hush Puppies and Ronnie Corbett golf sweaters that were so mocked behind his back were eased out and a lifelong friendship chronicled in a joint autobiography, Woody and Nord, nurtured them both. Southgate’s intelligence and application benefited him, too, and he became the youngest full-time captain in the country in 1993-94, the season he led Palace back into the Premier League. After Palace’s relegation in 1995, Southgate left in the summer for Aston Villa where he expected to join Andy Townsend and Ian Taylor in his usual central midfield role. So did Brian Little, the man who signed him for £2.5 million, but a fortnight later could not resist buying Mark Draper when Leicester finally agreed to sell. Little, an underrated, strangely neglected manager, put him between Ugo Ehiogu and Paul McGrath in a back-three, a move so successful that England called him up after only eight games in the position. Not what he seems: Gareth Southgate Credit: Matthias Hangst/Getty Images When Des Walker lost his aura of impregnability in the early Nineties, England reverted to type at the back, ‘head-on-a-stick’ centre-halfs, as Gary Lineker called them, or export maypoles, the static object around which foreigners would dance. Terry Venables wanted something more progressive, a centre-back who was comfortable moving out of defence to pick up opponents attacking from deeper positions. Southgate flourished in the role and, despite the penalty miss in the Euro 96 semi-final that will forever shadow him, continued to perform astutely in Glenn Hoddle’s sides, never better than during the 0-0 draw with Italy that secured qualification for the 1998 World Cup. His game continued to evolve well into his thirties, becoming as accomplished an orthodox central defender in a back-four as he had been in a three and it is a testament to his quality and durability that when Rio Ferdinand was banned for missing a drugs test in 2003, Sir Alex Ferguson immediately tried to sign the 33-year-old from Middlesbrough. How England can get the job done against physical Panama Looking back it seems obvious that he was born to manage but given that he has moved at the Football Association from Head of Elite Development to Under-21 head coach to England manager, it is odd to recall that he succeeded Steve McClaren at the Riverside without a Pro Licence, in the face of much opposition from the League Managers Association, and had to qualify on the job. Southgate looks the model of a modern coach, even down to the DH Lawrence beard - cosmopolitan, flexible and cerebral. Yet there are echoes too of Malcolm Allison and Dave Sexton, whose undervalued toughness complemented their sprightly creativity and aptitude for teaching. But don’t be fooled by appearance. Twice in the past he has identified that inspiration is key - first when he witheringly said of Eriksson’s half-time team-talk when England had just conceded a stoppage-time equaliser in the 2002 World Cup quarter-final: “We were expecting Winston Churchill and instead got Iain Duncan Smith.” And then again in 2006 when advocating a successor for Eriksson: “I want an Englishman who’s going to say: ‘Remember Churchill.’” If anyone in Nizhny Novgorod hears strains of ‘We shall fight on the beaches’ delivered in the extraordinary, deliberate tones of Denis Norden this afternoon, there can be only one culprit: a man who continues to defy all preconceptions. As for Panama, who fought bravely against Belgium, kettled them and hobbled them with some cynical and wild tackles, the 30C heat in the city once known as Gorky after Maxim, though Sorrento and Capri had similar claims over the writer, should have a greater toll on much older legs. They are a veteran side, a tough side and play with genuinely intimidating muscular athleticism. Any thoughts that they may trial a new approach here have been thoroughly debunked by their veteran defensive midfielder Gabriel Gomez. “We are men, we are aggressive,” he said. “Football is played with aggression, with desire. We are a team that knows how to play and when we have to fight, we fight.” For all that, they are pretty enlightened technically if not always tactically and can open up a defence with decent movement - at no great pace - and some inspired passing angles. Against Belgium they were unable to commit runners consistently to help out their lone 37-year-old forward and settled for an attritional scrap that frustrated world-class talents such as Eden Hazard and Kevin De Bruyne and made them look pedestrian. It took a terrific strike from Dries Mertens to prise Panama’s vice-grip around their throats early in the second half after a stultifying first 45 minutes. Class will out but England and their supporters will have to be patient.
Harry Kane scores hat-trick as England hit Panama for six to secure World Cup knock-out qualification
Group standings and permutations You are the VAR: Think you can do better than the World Cup referees? Test yourself here Get Telegraph Football WhatsApp for in-match analysis and talking points throughout the World Cup Jim White: Fantastic fans and where to find them at World Cup 2018 ​There have been so many times when England were such a tactically flat, stressed-out bunch that they could squeeze the joy out of battering even the meekest opposition, so against Panama you had to rub your eyes at the general levels of fun being had. This was England as we rarely see them, the game won in the first half, a place in the second round with a match to spare and a general feeling of abandon that anything could happen. Harry Kane notched only the third World Cup hat-trick in English history, and then there was an unfamiliar competence observed on the basics of the game, especially two set-piece goals created for John Stones that demonstrated actual planning. Everything that could go right for England did although they never felt lucky and they chuckled at Kane’s third that ricocheted off his heel while he was looking the other way. Somewhere in the Moscow outskirts one could only guess at the grand disdain Cristiano Ronaldo will have felt at being supplanted as the tournament’s top scorer in that manner. It hardly needs saying that this was England’s biggest World Cup win but it was also World Cup football as enjoyment rather than the usual torture. Afterwards, Gareth Southgate conjured up the modern English pastoral when he said he was glad to have delivered goals for a public watching at home on a “warm Sunday afternoon”. A great vision of barbecues ablaze, televisions repositioned and six times a boozy roar across the back gardens. Out in the scorching mid-afternoon of Nizhny Novgorod, an industrial goliath east of Moscow, England looked strangely at ease in a foreign land: with the heat, with the pressure of being the favourites, with the rhythm of tournament football. They once got to half-time against Andorra in Barcelona in a Euro 2008 qualifier without sticking a goal past the part-timers of the ski resort nation and yet this time they had buried the first within nine minutes. Later the Panama coach would excuse his players their tactical naivety and their relentless corner routine grappling by proclaiming that the nation had made history with their first World Cup goal from substitute Felipe Badoy. “We are virgins!” Hernan Dario Gomez said. “We have been born before the due date! We are debutants. We have to celebrate what we have done.” Yet the team ranked 55th in the world edged out the United States on their way to qualification. What mattered was the performance was good from England, and the greediness with which they helped themselves to five before half-time showed a little frission of pleasure at being the bullies for once. Southgate called it “ruthlessness” and there was something very smart about the way in which Stones swept through the pack unmarked to head in the first while Panama stuck doggedly to their gameplan of trying to spear-tackle Harry Maguire at every dead ball situation. England permutations | Who could they face in knockout stages? Southgate credited his strikers’ coach Allan Russell for the finessing of set-pieces and the Scot has done good work, especially with the fourth that was worked back and forth across the box before Stones nodded in his second. Jesse Lingard won the penalty for Kane’s first, and curled in the third after an exchange with Raheem Sterling. Kane won his second penalty himself just before half-time with Anibal Godoy trying to coerce him in the penalty area with all the subtlety of a new pub landlord breaking up his first fight. Both Kane penalties were dispatched with a viciousness that spoke of a confidence in that particular art - which is also unusual when it comes to England. They went in five goals up. The Panama captain Roman Torres, a big man who also nurtured a Maguire preoccupation in the first half, beckoned his team-mates together for a chat on the pitch. There was a conversation, although sadly not the full Phil Brown routine. Kieran Trippier departed in the second half with a minor strain but he had done enough to underline his new pre-eminence from dead balls. It was he who picked out Stones from a corner for the first, and Trippier then found Lingard before he was fouled for the first of two penalties. Southgate made a place for his understudy right-back in this new formation and Trippier’s range of delivery ticks all the boxes. The last group game against Belgium in Kaliningrad on Thursday, with its full complement of England fans in the Russian exclave on the Gulf of Finland will not be the decisive match it could have been. Southgate said later his preoccupation was “squad harmony” and giving chances to those who have not played much, which will include the three unused outfield players, Gary Cahill, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Phil Jones. There is the tricky question of whether first or second place in Group G will open up the better route for England, identically matched with Belgium and in first place by virtue of disciplinary record. With Romelu Lukaku nursing an injury and Kane potentially rested it could yet be a strange hand of poker that both managers play. England have been here before, hedging their bets on the last group game and came out the worse for it. That was at Euro 2016 when the momentum of a win over Wales in the second group game was squandered when Roy Hodgson rested key players for the final game against Slovakia. England were pitched into a fateful second round tie against Iceland rather than Northern Ireland and the rest is so many bad memories. Both Southgate and Roberto Martinez have said they want to win the game although we wait to see. Kane’s third cannoned off him, a Ruben Loftus-Cheek shot heading in another direction, and Southgate immediately replaced him with Jamie Vardy. Fabian Delph played his first minutes in place of Lingard and Trippier was later substituted for Danny Rose. This is the shape of the England team that is likely to play against Belgium. The last time England showed anything like this promise in a tournament, at Euro 2004, it was the third group game that they lost Rooney to injury so perhaps caution will be Southgate’s guiding light. Even so, they lit a fuse against lowly Panama. Unlike so many of their predecessors at tournaments, England feel part of this one - scoring goals, forcing others to notice them. When he took the job on a permanent basis, Southgate recalled watching a highlights reel of the 2014 World Cup at a Fifa draw and noticing with horror that not once did it feature England, so meagre had their efforts been at that tournament. Already England are on the highlights reel for 2018. They have scored eight goals in two games and have the tournament’s current top striker. Having hit this kind of pace it would be a shame to see it peter out against Belgium before they embark on the second round. They might not have the best squad at the tournament but they have some form at last and the confidence flowing from that is of the kind we have not seen in years. 3:57PM Well, this is something Even if Loftus-Cheek's pass was really a shot: 25 - There were 25 uninterrupted passes played by England before their 6th goal today; the longest sequence for a World Cup goal since 1966 & one more pass than Esteban Cambiasso's goal for Argentina v Serbia in 2006 (24). Fortunate.#Eng#EngPan#WorldCuppic.twitter.com/pBnHr1EEKr— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) June 24, 2018 3:55PM How they stand 3:46PM The captain speaks again Professional. Clinical. Bring on Belgium and the knockout rounds. �� #ThreeLions#WorldCuppic.twitter.com/QXSsHNoejq— Harry Kane (@HKane) June 24, 2018 3:24PM Gareth Southgate speaks "I didn’t like the performance. Well, I didn’t like the start, and I didn’t like the goal at the end, but I guess the bits in the middle were pretty good. I think we were a little bit anxious at the beginning. We played some really good stuff after 35, 40 minutes. "The second half is difficult. We talked about the importance of one more goal to be top of the group, which is why the goal at the end is disappointing. But it’s really rewarding to see how well they’re playing, and how much they’re enjoying their football. "Big moments for Jess Lingard today, of course great for the captain to get his hat-trick which made it easier to take him off. [Was he OK about coming off?] Probably not but I've got a group to look after and there were some heavy tackles flyinhg about. "We said before the game, no more yellow cards. That was a key part of the second half, definitely. "We want to keep momentum, so we’ll have to have a think about the team we want to put out [against Belgium]. There’s an opportunity as well that players that need a match, but also we want to keep winning football matches. It’s a nice decision to have." 3:21PM Breaking news about England's anthem for the Belgium game It's been changed to this for Messrs Walker, Stones, Maguire, Rose, Delph and Vardy: 3:18PM Ruben Loftus-Cheek has a word "To win 6-1 in the World Cup is fantastic. I’m delighted with that. I think we want to put on a good performance for the fans, but also for ourselves. "For such a young captain [Harry is] so vocal. I think everyone respects him massively, what he’s done for Tottenham and bringing it in for England. Ruben Loftus-Cheek made his first World Cup start and it was his shot that Harry Kane deflected in for his hat-trick Credit: AP Photo/Alastair Grant "We work on set pieces a lot, and to see it coming good in the games when we prepare so much for it. It’s such a big factor in games, we put in so much work and we’re glad that it keeps coming out on the pitch." 3:14PM Ashley Young takes the mic "The togetherness I’ve seen is incredible. Off the pitch everybody mixes with each other. Everybody wants the ball, nobody shies away from the ball. We’ve got to keep on doing that, keep showing our confidence and keep playing the way we have. The start of something good Credit: JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images "We’ve just got to keep our feet on the ground and keep working hard in training. This could be the start of something good. 3:10PM Relive the match in a minute 3:09PM Here are Ben Rumsby's ratings England vs Panama player ratings 3:08PM Jesse Lingard speaks I thrive in that role. It's great to be around the lads. There's a great team spirit. The confidence is flowing, I don't see why not [we can't go all the way] but we take each game as it comes. [You don't seem very exuberant] I'm always like this in interviews. 3:06PM Opta's statistical pointers England have won both of their opening two group stage games at a World Cup tournament for the third time, also doing so in 1982 and 2006. This was England’s biggest ever win in a major tournament match (World Cup and European Championships). This was only the fifth occasion a side had scored five goals before half-time in a World Cup match, and the first since Germany did so against Brazil in the 2014 semi-final. England scored as many goals in this match as they had in their previous seven World Cup matches combined (6). Only in 1966 (11) have England scored more goals in a single World Cup tournament than they have in 2018 (8, same as 1954 and 1990). John Stones became the first England defender to score two goals in a single World Cup match. Harry Kane is only the third England player to score a hat-trick in a World Cup match, after Geoff Hurst vs Germany in the 1966 final and Gary Lineker vs Poland in 1986. England striker Harry Kane is the first player to have scored at least twice in both of his first two ever World Cup appearances since Poland’s Grzegorz Lato in 1974. Lato went on to win the Golden Boot at that tournament. England’s Harry Kane is now the leading scorer at the 2018 World Cup with five goals. He’s scored with all five of his shots on target in the tournament. 3:02PM Harry Kane speaks Fantastic. So proud of the boys. Just enjoying being here.They started pretty well but we've been working on the setpieces and it all came together. The match ball is one of my lucky ones but I'll take it. It's been brilliant, both sets of fans. Ours have always been great but it's what the World Cup is all about. We're not going to get too far ahead of ourselves but you have to believe. There's a long way to go but we have to stick to our game plan. A bit disappointed to concede at the end. We'll go into Belgium looking for a win but let's see what happens. Now we'll rest, recover and get ready for next week. 2:57PM Here's your chance to rate the players England player rater 2:53PM Full time England 6-1 Panama A hat-trick for Kane, two for Stones and a screamer from Lingard give England their record victory in tournament football. They led 5-0 at half-time and then squeezed the game, harboured their reserves and celebrate a famous victory. 2:51PM 90+2 min England 6-1 Panama The game has pretty much petered out in the second half but I suppose that is evidence of clever game management and resource protection by England. Lingard, a picture of joy, juggles a plastic cup with his feet while sitting on the bench. 2:49PM 90 min England 6-1 Panama Young's cross is flicked on towards the centre of goal and Stones, on a hat-trick, just fails to connect with a stabbed finish. Penedo gobbles it up gratefully. We'll have four more minutes. 2:48PM 89 min England 6-1 Panama There are horns and cow bells contributing to the cacophony. England have a free kick about 35m out, left of centre. Young will take. 2:46PM 87 min England 6-1 Panama Vardy sprints down the right, whitewash on the soles of his feet, and beats Davis. He fires over a deep cross outside the box for Delph who has to jump high to trap it, which he accomplishes but lands awkwardly so mis-hist his pass. 2:44PM 86 min England 6-1 Panama 'Nothing wrong with a boring second half,' says Danny Murphy and, of course, it makes sense. Rashford for Lingard, though, would have been something worth seeing. 2:42PM 84 min England 6-1 Panama England pass it around slowly around the back - killing time and the game understandably. Vardy has hardly touched the ball. 2:41PM 82 min England 6-1 Panama Sterling tacks in from the left flank on to his right foot and sends a curving shot whistling past the far post. Hit very sweetly on the instep but not enough whip to bring it back in. 2:39PM 80 min England 6-1 Panama The goal was set up by one sub and scored by the other. Henderson, acting captain, gives the players a rollicking and tells them to step it back up. England 6 - 1 Panama (Felipe Baloy, 78 min) 2:38PM 78 min England 6-1 Panama And that goal is greeted more raucously than any of the preceding six by the crowd who have embraced their hordes of Panamanian guests. 2:37PM GOAL!! England 6-1 Panama Baloy - the 37-year-old - does what Torres didn't, connects with a sliding half-volley, this lone from about 8m when England's offside trap falls apart from a free-kick on the left. Poor defending. Crisp finish. 2:35PM 75 min England 6-0 Panama Rodriguez sprints between Walker and Young and gets to it first to cross. It's overhit but Rose lets it go out for a corner on the right nit knowing if there was anyone behind him. They whip in the corner and it's glanced on to the back post. Torres telescopes out his right leg and lunges to tap it in from a metre but bludgeons it wide. 2:33PM 74 min England 6-0 Panama He chips it to the far post where Maguire wins it and knocks it back across. Another touch sends it out to the 18-yard line where Henderson, shouting Loftus-Cheek to 'leave it!' hooks a roundhouse volley - a 'Ronnie Whelan' for older readers, and hooks it powerfully round the left post. 2:31PM 72 min England 6-0 Panama Ashley Young, now playing on the right, takes a free-kick from the left. England's sixth came from an inadvertent deflection off Harry Kane Credit: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images 2:28PM 68 min England 6-0 Panama Murillo loses the ball on the right and it allows time for substitutions. Rose replaces Trippier who took a knock. That's six Tykes. For Panama Barcenas and Perez go off, Baloy and Arroyo come on. 2:26PM 65 min England 6-0 Panama Barcenas darts down the inside right channel and has a chance from a tight angle but Pickford is out smartly to blocktackle him and Stones and Walker deal with the ball comfortably. Here comes another Yorkshireman in Rose. White shirts, white rose. 2:24PM 63 min England 6-0 Panama Harry Kane is now the leading scorer in the tournament and the third England World Cup hat-trick man after Sir Geoff Hurst and Gary Lineker. 2:22PM 60 min England 6-0 Panama No, the goal stands. Loftus-Cheek's shot hits Kane's heel and balloons over the keeper. That;s his last touch. Kane is going off to be replaced by Vardy and Lingard will be replaced by Delph. This is not England any more. It's Yorkshire v Panama. England 6 - 0 Panama (Harry Kane, 62 min) 2:20PM GOAL!! England 6-0 Panama Kane has his hat-trick. VAR might scrub this off, though. 2:19PM 60 min England 5-0 Panama Panama move the ball to the right and back again as England set themselves in compact defensive lines to win the ball back. Stones has three runners upfield but doesn't make the right choice. 2:17PM 58 min England 5-0 Panama Panama continue to engage in some after-tackle filth, hands in faces, sly kicks and digs. 2:16PM 56 min England 5-0 Panama Pickford taps it to Walker who plays it up to Henderson and he gives Kane a hare to chase with a long ball up the inside-right channel. Escobar, who has improved, gets there first. 2:15PM 55 min England 5-0 Panama No criticism that England have not resumed as they finished the half. They're trying to find their rhythm. 2:13PM 54 min England 5-0 Panama Fingers burnt by the penalty, they keep their hands largely to themselves this time. But Trippier's centre is well-defended. Possession: England vs Panama 2:12PM 52 min England 5-0 Panama With all the caveats about how useless Panama have been defensively and in the final third, Sterling is playing very well, adopting some excellent positions and playing some penetrating passes. England have a throw on the right and give it to Loftus-Cheek who tries to round Escobar by the byline but is tackled. England corner. Panama;s defenders are warned again. 2:09PM 50 min England 5-0 Panama Kane has the ball on halfway and Sterling hurtles out of the blocks beyond the defence when Kane releases it. Brilliant run but Kane's pass was too heavy. They had beaten the offside trap but the throughball was too close to Penedo who pelted out to win the race with Sterling. 2:07PM 48 min England 5-0 Panama But Barcenas misjudges Perez's run and plays the wrong pass into the box. England pounce on it and set off on a rapid counter. 2:06PM 47 min England 5-0 Panama Panama are passing the ball around slowly, keen, one thinks, not to be humiliated further. They inject some pace now and work a triangle up the right. 2:05PM 46 min England 5-0 Panama England attack up the right, Loftus-Cheek and Trippier combining well and crossing to the back post for Kane who beat Torres but cannot squeeze an attempt on goal. 2:02PM Praise indeed What can i say, unbelievable! #WorldCup— Sir Geoff Hurst (@TheGeoffHurst) June 24, 2018 1:58PM John Stones's second and Harry Kane's second John Stones scores his second England goal Credit: AP Photo/Victor Caivano And here's Harry Kane's second penalty. He went the same way but even if the keeper had it would have amputated his right hand at the wrist. Harry Kane scores his fourth World Cup goal of 2018 Credit: REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado 1:55PM Half-time reading Here's a gallery of the worst teams at international tournaments. Here's Lingard's goal and Sterling deserves great praise for his cute pass: Jesse Lingard puts England 3-0 up Credit: REUTERS/Matthew Childs Jesse Lingard celebrates after scoring his first World Cup goal Credit: AP Photo/Matthias Schrader 1:50PM Sorry went too early - it's only half-time of course Here's Paul Hayward on the first goal: "Grappling in the box looks clever until you ignore the runner, as Panama did there with John Stones, who darted between wrestling matches to put England in front.@ 1:49PM Half-time What a terrific first-half performance form England. They lead a World Cup game 5-0 and there's still 45 minutes to come. If Panama finish with 11 men I'm a Dutchman. 1:48PM 45+1 min England 5-0 Panama Maguire is smacked in the mouth by Cooper who swings his arm as they leap. That looked deliberate. Panama are losing all discipline and the plot. Looks like they'll go down swinging, literally. Dirty devils. 1:47PM 44 min England 5-0 Panama So Kane joins Lukaku and Ronaldo on four goals apiece. Goal: England ( 45 + 1 min ) 1:46PM GOAL! England 5-0 Panama Escobar and Torres pantomime disapproval at the penalty and are booked which eats up more time for Kane to settle himself. But he isn't fazed. He torpedoes it into the same place. 1:44PM England penalty! Kane is being grappled at a corner. The referee warns the players not to do it three times but they don't listen. Godoy tries to bodyslam Kane. 1:43PM 40 min England 4-0 Panama Amazing. Henderson receives the pass on the edge of the penalty area back to goal and hooks a cross to Kane beyond the right post. He nods it across to Sterling whose header from a couple of metres is saved by Penedo and Stones is first to the rebound on the right and forces his header into the roof of the net. England 4 - 0 Panama (John Stones, 40 min) 1:40PM GOAL!! England 4-0 Panama John Stones from a perfectly-executed free-kick routine. 1:39PM 36 min England 3-0 Panama Lingard, battered from pillar to post for the first 15 minutes, glides in from the left to take Sterling's stabbed pass and bends a venomous shot from the left side of the D around the onrushing, panicking defenders and into the top right corner of the goal. This is a bit like England v Poland from 1986. England 3 - 0 Panama (Jesse Lingard, 36 min) Goal: England ( 36 min ) 1:36PM GOAL!! England 3-0 Panama Lingard with a lovely right-foot shot from 20m, steered into the top corner. 1:35PM 33 min England 2-0 Panama Lingard bails Maguire out at the back with a diligent and dogged tracking run after Maguire loses his position. He has many attributes Maguire but he needs too screw the nut. There are too many errors. 1:34PM 30 min England 2-0 Panama England free-kick 35m out. Trippier will take. The break affords Murphy and Mowbray some time for golf banter. Trippier strikes it well, curling it deep beyond the back post where it is met by Maguire's run. He heads it back across goal and over the other post. He should have squared it to his team-mates in the middle or gone for goal but it turned into neither one thing or the other. Harry Kane strikes the penalty Credit: JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images 1:30PM 28 min England 2-0 Panama Much better from Panama who enjoy a couple of minutes of sinuous movement and sharp passing. They work an opening through Cooper and Perez for Rodriguez to run on to a threaded pass in the box, to the left. He has Godoy peeling off his marker and free but lashes a shot from an acute angle into orbit. What a waste. 1:29PM 26 min England 2-0 Panama Young penalised for kicking Cooper where the sun doesn't shine as he raised his leg to control a bouncing ball. Henderson hooks a lob over the back four for Sterling who wins it but was offside. Ruben Loftus-Cheek has been booked for a foul just after the third kick-off. Here's Kane putting the penalty in something my son and his schoofriends call 'top bins': Goal: England ( 22 min ) Harry Kane buries England's second from the spot Credit: Jan Kruger/Getty Images) 1:25PM 24 min England 2-0 Panama Panama's strategy seems to be to inject as much needle into this as possible, after all sorts of niggly fouls and delaying tactics, they complain that England take too long in their celebrations, this after forestalling the taking of the pen by almost 150 seconds. 1:23PM 22 min England 2-0 Panama Blimey! That was some penalty. He almost ripped the net with his thunderfoot. 1:22PM GOAL!! England 2-0 Panama Yes he can, despite some shoving from Barcenas on Lingard on the 18-yard line and Gomez trying to spook the taker. Smashes it into the top-right corner. 1:21PM No offside So Kane will take the penalty. Can he score in his fifth successive match for England? 1:20PM England penalty! Lingard bundled over by Escobar and Torres as he ran down the inside-right channel. VAR is checking whether he was offside. 1:19PM 18 min England 1-0 Panama Torres kicks across Sterling's foot and catches his studs. He goes down screaming blue murder until the ref stops the game for his self-inflicted pain. England 1 - 0 Panama (John Stones, 8 min) 1:18PM 16 min England 1-0 Panama For the third time Panama exploit hesitation from Young and Maguire on the left of England's defence to dial up the speed and shift the ball inside quickly. Barcenas, striding forward down the inside-left channel, meets the pass from Murillo and bends a left-foot shot that has Pickford scrambling across goal and diving but it trims the outside of the side-netting. Close, though. 1:15PM 14 min England 1-0 Panama Dawdling by Torres invites Kane twice to have a run at the defence but he can't keep the ball under control and the opposition recover. Here's Stones' goal: Stones puts England into the lead Credit: Alex Morton/Getty Images 1:13PM 12 min England 1-0 Panama England lose possession cheaply from the free-kick, Maguire's poise and precision absent so far. Barcenas accelerates away from him and into the box. Walker clears up the first mess but England cause another that Panama's haste squanders. Walker's lunge stopped Perez tapping in at the back post. 1:11PM 11 min England 1-0 Panama Cooper lunges in at Lingard just past halfway and clatters into his shin pad malevolently. Yellow card. 1:10PM 9 min England 1-0 Panama Maguire and Kane were being grappled and obstructed with octopus arms but Stones wriggled free of his assailant and stooped to steer in a bullet header from Trippier's fine corner. 1:08PM GOAL! England 1-0 Panama John Stones buries a header from the penalty spot. 1:08PM 7 min England 0-0 Panama Good pass from Walker, diagonally out to the right flank, for Trippier's clever run and teh full-back wins a corner. 1:07PM 6 min England 0-0 Panama Panama's tempo has caught England on the hop a bit and Rodriguez, the victim of Henderson's foul, is felled again as they snap into tackles. The free-kick is taken too long and England come back upfield but at no great pace. 1:06PM 5 min England 0-0 Panama Panama take the free-kick into the box Kane heads clear and Barcenas wallops a 25m shot over the bar. Then Panama exploit the short goalkick and Maguire's poor pass to break down the left and find space for Godoy to shoot and he too thrashes it high and wide. Terrible finish but England invited the pressure with dozy play there. 1:04PM 3 min England 0-0 Panama After 90secs treatment Lingard is passed fit to continue and Panama restart, knocking it down the left where Henderson is penalised for a strong tackle. 1:03PM 2 min England 0-0 Panama And drags a pass back from the byline to Lingard whose first touch is clumsy and he has to go up to try to win it back in the air. Gomez elbows him in the mouth as they challenge for it but the referee deems it accidental. He did swing his arm back but he isn't penalised. 1:02PM 1 min England 0-0 Panama Panama 's huddle finally breaks up and England kick-off, attacking to the left and overloaded on the right flank. They roll it back to Stones and the three players on the right bomb forward but they play it short and move it to the left and back again. Trippier slips a pass past Davis and Loftus-Cheek rounds him. 12:59PM Two minutes to go The players chat and shake their legs. 12:57PM Some Panama fans and players Have gone for the full Dallaglio, moist eyed and bellowing it out. Tune. 12:56PM England stand with their arms across each other's shoulders For the national anthem and when it ends Harry Kane shouts 'Come on!, Come on!' There are far more Panama fans there than England's and they sing lustily along. 12:52PM Jesse Lingard Is being interviewed by Gabby Logan and is asked to do his Scouse and Cockney accents. The first is passable, the second risible. Pace Dr Johnson: It's not done well; but you are surprised to find it done at all. 12:47PM Pre-hydration routines This really should be the match shirt. Harry Kane takes a swig Credit: Maja Hitij - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images 12:45PM The temperature is heading up 34C Gareth Southgate says he will be using England's hydration strategy but there will be no official water breaks. On the Brexit scale 34C is 93F so he will have to employ his substitutes judiciously. "We think we will have the vast majority of the play, which is good in this heat, but we have to move the ball quickly and use width intelligently. The prize for today is to qualify with a game to spare but we have to concentrate on our performance. We need to be patient." 12:36PM Alan Shearer and Gary Lineker Have just embraced and jumped up and down, a la Chandler and Joey, in imitation of the excitement of the Panama World Cup panel. Them Shearer reveals that he has had a word with Harry Kane and told him to speak to the referee about holding at corners before they are taken. Now the BBC is using Joy Divsion's Day of the Lords for a montage. I applaud their taste but it's sacrilege to have people talking over it. Music is to be listened to, not deployed as background. 12:28PM Those starting XIs in black and white and their records England (3-1-4-1-1) Pickford; Walker, Stones, Maguire; Henderson; Trippier, Loftus-Cheek, Lingard, Young; Sterling; Kane. World Cup record: England Panama (4-5-1) Penedo; Murillo, R Torres, Escobar, Davis; Barcenas, Cooper, Gomez, Godoy, J Rodriguez; Perez. World Cup record: Panama Referee Gehad Grisha (History) 12:21PM England wear white, Panama red See how our Anna Wintour, Thom Gibbs, assesses the strips: World Cup kits ranked 12:20PM Spoiler alert Ninety minutes' ebb and flow can be a bit of a distraction for some. If you'd like to know the final score now, have a go on the Telegraph's ingenious AI forecaster: World Cup 2018 Simulator Single Game 12:08PM The heat is oppressive Jason Burt reports: The air conditioning in the England dressing room has been turned up to the maximum ahead of kick-off against Panama in an attempt to keep the players as cool as possible before the game starts. The players will also be given a fresh kit at half-time and iced towels to try and control their body temperatures with the temperatures on the pitch here in Nizhny Novgorod soaring towards the high 30 degrees celsius. The England medical staff are confident that the air conditioning in the dressing room will help although there may be a concern that the dry air could affect the breathing of the players, especially those susceptible to asthma. However the medics do not believe this will be a problem with dehumidifiers in use and, because the stadium is new, an air conditioning system which means it is ice cold inside the dressing room. In previous matches in such conditions England have also used fans inside the dressing room with players wearing ice vests as they warmed up but the more light-weight training gear is believed to be sufficient this time. Sometimes kit is also sprayed with a cooling agent and water to also help. A big issue will be hydration. Players will be urged to take on board as much fluid as possible and to hydrate at every opportunity during the match. The design of the stadium means that around half of the pitch will be in shade at kick-off but heat will undoubtedly be a factor. Gareth Southgate acknowledges the England supporters before the game Credit: REUTERS/Matthew Childs It may be roasting but Southgate's not taking off that weskit for anyone. Deux bieres et un pastis, garçon, s'il-vous plait. 12:04PM England make one change Ruben Loftus-Cheek comes in for Dele Alli and will partner Jesse Lingard in the midfield duo ahead of Jordan Henderson. Raheem Sterling starts and Marcus Rashford will continue as an impact sub. He's a terrific talent, Rashford, but I can see the sense in employing his impact as a substitute and his understanding of the opportunities the role provides - he seems more aware of them than Sterling and his better control in tight areas can turn tired defenders. If Sterling does his job and keeps running hard down the channels, Rashford can cash in later on. 11:59AM England team confirmed Here's the #ThreeLions teamsheet for today's game, as @rubey_lcheek comes in to replace @dele_official. �� pic.twitter.com/HztXwZSp0B— England (@England) June 24, 2018 11:58AM How England should go about their business today Here's our 140-cap columnist's take: What England must get right on and off the pitch to beat Panama and advance in this World Cup 11:55AM And another well-wisher Whose original intention was to retire at the end of this, his fourth World Cup, but wisely decided to call it a day 10 months early: Come on @England!! #ThreeLions— Wayne Rooney (@WayneRooney) June 24, 2018 11:52AM Panama avoid team sheet melodrama By naming an unchanged XI for today's match 24 hours early: Panama Penedo; Murillo, Roman Torres, Escobar, Davis; Barcenas, Cooper, Gomez, Godoy, Jose Luis Rodriguez; Perez. Substitutes Calderon, Cummings, Gabriel Torres, Diaz, Machado, Pimentel, Arroyo, Ovalle, Tejada, Avila, Baloy, Alex Rodriguez. Pointers from the Belgium game - Murillo is pretty good, Roman Torres is an ox, Barcenas a snapper and young Rodriguez is going to be a fine player. 11:46AM England fans begin to arrive at the stadium Flying the flag Credit: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire Robert Mendick and Wil Crisp report: "Travelling England fans have never been so middle-class. Nizhny Novgorod, a city on the Volga once so sensitive it was ‘closed’ to visitors in Soviet times, was laid siege on Saturday by a small army of England fans made up of lecturers, chartered accountants, investment bankers, company CEOs and the like. Read the rest of the article here ... [The game's gone] 11:39AM A man, a plan ... a palindrome Opposition research - plenty of troubling stuff that comes under that category in today's newspapers. This is far more wholesome: 16 things you didn't know about Panama 11:32AM England alumni reporting for duty This is what it is all about. Come on England!!!!!! ������ #ENGPANpic.twitter.com/3Gul6XnOh7— Ian Wright (@IanWright0) June 24, 2018 Arms up for a victory today! Come on @England �������������� ����‍♂ #bbcworldcup#russia2018#ENGPANpic.twitter.com/zOSzN5tISx— Alan Shearer (@alanshearer) June 24, 2018 The guys wearing @england shirt today feel like a group who have an understanding of what the manager wants from them & who believe in all he asks. A recipe for good days ahead. Let’s go ������ #england#worldcup#ENG#3lionspic.twitter.com/cRyonsKbcW— Rio Ferdinand (@rioferdy5) June 24, 2018 11:26AM Ruben Loftus-Cheek should make his first World Cup start Here's what Ruud Gullit had to say about him last September: "I always loved this guy, also when he was at Chelsea. I saw him playing yesterday as well. “He’s so influential and I think the more he plays, the better he gets. He knows how to play his game, he knows how to go forward. Ruben Loftus-Cheek is expected to start in place of Dele Alli Credit: David Ramos - FIFA “I want him in the centre, he needs to have the ball. Technical, strong, he is a fantastic player. He is the one who has the brains. “He’s a future England player, this one. I really believe in this boy, he’s a good player." Here's what Paul Hayward has to say about his selection: Ruben Loftus-Cheek can carry the flag for England's thwarted generation 11:13AM England missed a spectacular night in St Petersburg People watch fireworks and a brig with scarlet sails on the Neva River during the Scarlet Sails festivities marking school graduation in St Petersburg Credit: Photo/Dmitri Lovetsky 11:07AM Team news Matt Scott reports that England will make only one change rather than the anticipated two and that Raheem Sterling, scorer of 18 Premier League goals and provider of 11 Premier League assists en route to the title last year, has been retained in the starting XI. Read the full story here. Raheem Sterling will start his fourth World Cup match for England and second in succession in Nizhny Novgorod against Panama Credit: Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images 10:55AM England's qualification game In an intriguing twist to Wonderful World, Gareth Southgate adapted the words of Sam Cooke, Herb Alpert and Lou Adler to say history is not the important thing for this team’. Biology? Science book? The French they took? Word came there none. The only thing that matters, he says, is making their own history and they can certainly share an achievement today if they defeat Panama and join ‘Ron’s 22’ from 1982 and Sven’s band of Baden-Baden Charlie Big Potatoes from 2006 as England sides who have won their opening two group games at a World Cup. The England manager, by contrast with his players, is a student of history (no word on geography, trigonometry, algebra or what a slide rule is for). Southgate is known to the friends he grew up with at Crystal Palace as ‘'Nord’, a name bestowed on him by Wally Downes, but it is one that reflects the observational sharpness of a dressing-room wit. The young Gareth, with his eight O-levels and relatively affluent upbringing in Crawley, contrasted markedly with his more cocky and shrewdly streetwise South London contemporaries in the Palace youth team. His considered, unhurried way of speaking reminded Downes of Denis Norden, erstwhile co-writer of Take It From Here and a regular TV face hosting It’ll be Alright on the Night and speaking with his mouth full while selling Nuttall’s Mintoes. In an age when anyone in the game who spoke measuredly or enjoyed reading was instantly derided as ‘Prof’ or ‘Brains’, a descendant of the old Army contempt for ‘book learning’ characterised in It Ain’t Half Hot Mum’s ‘Mr La-Di-Dah Gunner Graham’, ‘Nord’ was a cut above. World Cup 2018 | The best of the Telegraph's coverage It stuck but his greenness did not. With the help of the goalkeeper Andy Woodman, the Hush Puppies and Ronnie Corbett golf sweaters that were so mocked behind his back were eased out and a lifelong friendship chronicled in a joint autobiography, Woody and Nord, nurtured them both. Southgate’s intelligence and application benefited him, too, and he became the youngest full-time captain in the country in 1993-94, the season he led Palace back into the Premier League. After Palace’s relegation in 1995, Southgate left in the summer for Aston Villa where he expected to join Andy Townsend and Ian Taylor in his usual central midfield role. So did Brian Little, the man who signed him for £2.5 million, but a fortnight later could not resist buying Mark Draper when Leicester finally agreed to sell. Little, an underrated, strangely neglected manager, put him between Ugo Ehiogu and Paul McGrath in a back-three, a move so successful that England called him up after only eight games in the position. Not what he seems: Gareth Southgate Credit: Matthias Hangst/Getty Images When Des Walker lost his aura of impregnability in the early Nineties, England reverted to type at the back, ‘head-on-a-stick’ centre-halfs, as Gary Lineker called them, or export maypoles, the static object around which foreigners would dance. Terry Venables wanted something more progressive, a centre-back who was comfortable moving out of defence to pick up opponents attacking from deeper positions. Southgate flourished in the role and, despite the penalty miss in the Euro 96 semi-final that will forever shadow him, continued to perform astutely in Glenn Hoddle’s sides, never better than during the 0-0 draw with Italy that secured qualification for the 1998 World Cup. His game continued to evolve well into his thirties, becoming as accomplished an orthodox central defender in a back-four as he had been in a three and it is a testament to his quality and durability that when Rio Ferdinand was banned for missing a drugs test in 2003, Sir Alex Ferguson immediately tried to sign the 33-year-old from Middlesbrough. How England can get the job done against physical Panama Looking back it seems obvious that he was born to manage but given that he has moved at the Football Association from Head of Elite Development to Under-21 head coach to England manager, it is odd to recall that he succeeded Steve McClaren at the Riverside without a Pro Licence, in the face of much opposition from the League Managers Association, and had to qualify on the job. Southgate looks the model of a modern coach, even down to the DH Lawrence beard - cosmopolitan, flexible and cerebral. Yet there are echoes too of Malcolm Allison and Dave Sexton, whose undervalued toughness complemented their sprightly creativity and aptitude for teaching. But don’t be fooled by appearance. Twice in the past he has identified that inspiration is key - first when he witheringly said of Eriksson’s half-time team-talk when England had just conceded a stoppage-time equaliser in the 2002 World Cup quarter-final: “We were expecting Winston Churchill and instead got Iain Duncan Smith.” And then again in 2006 when advocating a successor for Eriksson: “I want an Englishman who’s going to say: ‘Remember Churchill.’” If anyone in Nizhny Novgorod hears strains of ‘We shall fight on the beaches’ delivered in the extraordinary, deliberate tones of Denis Norden this afternoon, there can be only one culprit: a man who continues to defy all preconceptions. As for Panama, who fought bravely against Belgium, kettled them and hobbled them with some cynical and wild tackles, the 30C heat in the city once known as Gorky after Maxim, though Sorrento and Capri had similar claims over the writer, should have a greater toll on much older legs. They are a veteran side, a tough side and play with genuinely intimidating muscular athleticism. Any thoughts that they may trial a new approach here have been thoroughly debunked by their veteran defensive midfielder Gabriel Gomez. “We are men, we are aggressive,” he said. “Football is played with aggression, with desire. We are a team that knows how to play and when we have to fight, we fight.” For all that, they are pretty enlightened technically if not always tactically and can open up a defence with decent movement - at no great pace - and some inspired passing angles. Against Belgium they were unable to commit runners consistently to help out their lone 37-year-old forward and settled for an attritional scrap that frustrated world-class talents such as Eden Hazard and Kevin De Bruyne and made them look pedestrian. It took a terrific strike from Dries Mertens to prise Panama’s vice-grip around their throats early in the second half after a stultifying first 45 minutes. Class will out but England and their supporters will have to be patient.
Group standings and permutations You are the VAR: Think you can do better than the World Cup referees? Test yourself here Get Telegraph Football WhatsApp for in-match analysis and talking points throughout the World Cup Jim White: Fantastic fans and where to find them at World Cup 2018 ​There have been so many times when England were such a tactically flat, stressed-out bunch that they could squeeze the joy out of battering even the meekest opposition, so against Panama you had to rub your eyes at the general levels of fun being had. This was England as we rarely see them, the game won in the first half, a place in the second round with a match to spare and a general feeling of abandon that anything could happen. Harry Kane notched only the third World Cup hat-trick in English history, and then there was an unfamiliar competence observed on the basics of the game, especially two set-piece goals created for John Stones that demonstrated actual planning. Everything that could go right for England did although they never felt lucky and they chuckled at Kane’s third that ricocheted off his heel while he was looking the other way. Somewhere in the Moscow outskirts one could only guess at the grand disdain Cristiano Ronaldo will have felt at being supplanted as the tournament’s top scorer in that manner. It hardly needs saying that this was England’s biggest World Cup win but it was also World Cup football as enjoyment rather than the usual torture. Afterwards, Gareth Southgate conjured up the modern English pastoral when he said he was glad to have delivered goals for a public watching at home on a “warm Sunday afternoon”. A great vision of barbecues ablaze, televisions repositioned and six times a boozy roar across the back gardens. Out in the scorching mid-afternoon of Nizhny Novgorod, an industrial goliath east of Moscow, England looked strangely at ease in a foreign land: with the heat, with the pressure of being the favourites, with the rhythm of tournament football. They once got to half-time against Andorra in Barcelona in a Euro 2008 qualifier without sticking a goal past the part-timers of the ski resort nation and yet this time they had buried the first within nine minutes. Later the Panama coach would excuse his players their tactical naivety and their relentless corner routine grappling by proclaiming that the nation had made history with their first World Cup goal from substitute Felipe Badoy. “We are virgins!” Hernan Dario Gomez said. “We have been born before the due date! We are debutants. We have to celebrate what we have done.” Yet the team ranked 55th in the world edged out the United States on their way to qualification. What mattered was the performance was good from England, and the greediness with which they helped themselves to five before half-time showed a little frission of pleasure at being the bullies for once. Southgate called it “ruthlessness” and there was something very smart about the way in which Stones swept through the pack unmarked to head in the first while Panama stuck doggedly to their gameplan of trying to spear-tackle Harry Maguire at every dead ball situation. England permutations | Who could they face in knockout stages? Southgate credited his strikers’ coach Allan Russell for the finessing of set-pieces and the Scot has done good work, especially with the fourth that was worked back and forth across the box before Stones nodded in his second. Jesse Lingard won the penalty for Kane’s first, and curled in the third after an exchange with Raheem Sterling. Kane won his second penalty himself just before half-time with Anibal Godoy trying to coerce him in the penalty area with all the subtlety of a new pub landlord breaking up his first fight. Both Kane penalties were dispatched with a viciousness that spoke of a confidence in that particular art - which is also unusual when it comes to England. They went in five goals up. The Panama captain Roman Torres, a big man who also nurtured a Maguire preoccupation in the first half, beckoned his team-mates together for a chat on the pitch. There was a conversation, although sadly not the full Phil Brown routine. Kieran Trippier departed in the second half with a minor strain but he had done enough to underline his new pre-eminence from dead balls. It was he who picked out Stones from a corner for the first, and Trippier then found Lingard before he was fouled for the first of two penalties. Southgate made a place for his understudy right-back in this new formation and Trippier’s range of delivery ticks all the boxes. The last group game against Belgium in Kaliningrad on Thursday, with its full complement of England fans in the Russian exclave on the Gulf of Finland will not be the decisive match it could have been. Southgate said later his preoccupation was “squad harmony” and giving chances to those who have not played much, which will include the three unused outfield players, Gary Cahill, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Phil Jones. There is the tricky question of whether first or second place in Group G will open up the better route for England, identically matched with Belgium and in first place by virtue of disciplinary record. With Romelu Lukaku nursing an injury and Kane potentially rested it could yet be a strange hand of poker that both managers play. England have been here before, hedging their bets on the last group game and came out the worse for it. That was at Euro 2016 when the momentum of a win over Wales in the second group game was squandered when Roy Hodgson rested key players for the final game against Slovakia. England were pitched into a fateful second round tie against Iceland rather than Northern Ireland and the rest is so many bad memories. Both Southgate and Roberto Martinez have said they want to win the game although we wait to see. Kane’s third cannoned off him, a Ruben Loftus-Cheek shot heading in another direction, and Southgate immediately replaced him with Jamie Vardy. Fabian Delph played his first minutes in place of Lingard and Trippier was later substituted for Danny Rose. This is the shape of the England team that is likely to play against Belgium. The last time England showed anything like this promise in a tournament, at Euro 2004, it was the third group game that they lost Rooney to injury so perhaps caution will be Southgate’s guiding light. Even so, they lit a fuse against lowly Panama. Unlike so many of their predecessors at tournaments, England feel part of this one - scoring goals, forcing others to notice them. When he took the job on a permanent basis, Southgate recalled watching a highlights reel of the 2014 World Cup at a Fifa draw and noticing with horror that not once did it feature England, so meagre had their efforts been at that tournament. Already England are on the highlights reel for 2018. They have scored eight goals in two games and have the tournament’s current top striker. Having hit this kind of pace it would be a shame to see it peter out against Belgium before they embark on the second round. They might not have the best squad at the tournament but they have some form at last and the confidence flowing from that is of the kind we have not seen in years. 3:57PM Well, this is something Even if Loftus-Cheek's pass was really a shot: 25 - There were 25 uninterrupted passes played by England before their 6th goal today; the longest sequence for a World Cup goal since 1966 & one more pass than Esteban Cambiasso's goal for Argentina v Serbia in 2006 (24). Fortunate.#Eng#EngPan#WorldCuppic.twitter.com/pBnHr1EEKr— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) June 24, 2018 3:55PM How they stand 3:46PM The captain speaks again Professional. Clinical. Bring on Belgium and the knockout rounds. �� #ThreeLions#WorldCuppic.twitter.com/QXSsHNoejq— Harry Kane (@HKane) June 24, 2018 3:24PM Gareth Southgate speaks "I didn’t like the performance. Well, I didn’t like the start, and I didn’t like the goal at the end, but I guess the bits in the middle were pretty good. I think we were a little bit anxious at the beginning. We played some really good stuff after 35, 40 minutes. "The second half is difficult. We talked about the importance of one more goal to be top of the group, which is why the goal at the end is disappointing. But it’s really rewarding to see how well they’re playing, and how much they’re enjoying their football. "Big moments for Jess Lingard today, of course great for the captain to get his hat-trick which made it easier to take him off. [Was he OK about coming off?] Probably not but I've got a group to look after and there were some heavy tackles flyinhg about. "We said before the game, no more yellow cards. That was a key part of the second half, definitely. "We want to keep momentum, so we’ll have to have a think about the team we want to put out [against Belgium]. There’s an opportunity as well that players that need a match, but also we want to keep winning football matches. It’s a nice decision to have." 3:21PM Breaking news about England's anthem for the Belgium game It's been changed to this for Messrs Walker, Stones, Maguire, Rose, Delph and Vardy: 3:18PM Ruben Loftus-Cheek has a word "To win 6-1 in the World Cup is fantastic. I’m delighted with that. I think we want to put on a good performance for the fans, but also for ourselves. "For such a young captain [Harry is] so vocal. I think everyone respects him massively, what he’s done for Tottenham and bringing it in for England. Ruben Loftus-Cheek made his first World Cup start and it was his shot that Harry Kane deflected in for his hat-trick Credit: AP Photo/Alastair Grant "We work on set pieces a lot, and to see it coming good in the games when we prepare so much for it. It’s such a big factor in games, we put in so much work and we’re glad that it keeps coming out on the pitch." 3:14PM Ashley Young takes the mic "The togetherness I’ve seen is incredible. Off the pitch everybody mixes with each other. Everybody wants the ball, nobody shies away from the ball. We’ve got to keep on doing that, keep showing our confidence and keep playing the way we have. The start of something good Credit: JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images "We’ve just got to keep our feet on the ground and keep working hard in training. This could be the start of something good. 3:10PM Relive the match in a minute 3:09PM Here are Ben Rumsby's ratings England vs Panama player ratings 3:08PM Jesse Lingard speaks I thrive in that role. It's great to be around the lads. There's a great team spirit. The confidence is flowing, I don't see why not [we can't go all the way] but we take each game as it comes. [You don't seem very exuberant] I'm always like this in interviews. 3:06PM Opta's statistical pointers England have won both of their opening two group stage games at a World Cup tournament for the third time, also doing so in 1982 and 2006. This was England’s biggest ever win in a major tournament match (World Cup and European Championships). This was only the fifth occasion a side had scored five goals before half-time in a World Cup match, and the first since Germany did so against Brazil in the 2014 semi-final. England scored as many goals in this match as they had in their previous seven World Cup matches combined (6). Only in 1966 (11) have England scored more goals in a single World Cup tournament than they have in 2018 (8, same as 1954 and 1990). John Stones became the first England defender to score two goals in a single World Cup match. Harry Kane is only the third England player to score a hat-trick in a World Cup match, after Geoff Hurst vs Germany in the 1966 final and Gary Lineker vs Poland in 1986. England striker Harry Kane is the first player to have scored at least twice in both of his first two ever World Cup appearances since Poland’s Grzegorz Lato in 1974. Lato went on to win the Golden Boot at that tournament. England’s Harry Kane is now the leading scorer at the 2018 World Cup with five goals. He’s scored with all five of his shots on target in the tournament. 3:02PM Harry Kane speaks Fantastic. So proud of the boys. Just enjoying being here.They started pretty well but we've been working on the setpieces and it all came together. The match ball is one of my lucky ones but I'll take it. It's been brilliant, both sets of fans. Ours have always been great but it's what the World Cup is all about. We're not going to get too far ahead of ourselves but you have to believe. There's a long way to go but we have to stick to our game plan. A bit disappointed to concede at the end. We'll go into Belgium looking for a win but let's see what happens. Now we'll rest, recover and get ready for next week. 2:57PM Here's your chance to rate the players England player rater 2:53PM Full time England 6-1 Panama A hat-trick for Kane, two for Stones and a screamer from Lingard give England their record victory in tournament football. They led 5-0 at half-time and then squeezed the game, harboured their reserves and celebrate a famous victory. 2:51PM 90+2 min England 6-1 Panama The game has pretty much petered out in the second half but I suppose that is evidence of clever game management and resource protection by England. Lingard, a picture of joy, juggles a plastic cup with his feet while sitting on the bench. 2:49PM 90 min England 6-1 Panama Young's cross is flicked on towards the centre of goal and Stones, on a hat-trick, just fails to connect with a stabbed finish. Penedo gobbles it up gratefully. We'll have four more minutes. 2:48PM 89 min England 6-1 Panama There are horns and cow bells contributing to the cacophony. England have a free kick about 35m out, left of centre. Young will take. 2:46PM 87 min England 6-1 Panama Vardy sprints down the right, whitewash on the soles of his feet, and beats Davis. He fires over a deep cross outside the box for Delph who has to jump high to trap it, which he accomplishes but lands awkwardly so mis-hist his pass. 2:44PM 86 min England 6-1 Panama 'Nothing wrong with a boring second half,' says Danny Murphy and, of course, it makes sense. Rashford for Lingard, though, would have been something worth seeing. 2:42PM 84 min England 6-1 Panama England pass it around slowly around the back - killing time and the game understandably. Vardy has hardly touched the ball. 2:41PM 82 min England 6-1 Panama Sterling tacks in from the left flank on to his right foot and sends a curving shot whistling past the far post. Hit very sweetly on the instep but not enough whip to bring it back in. 2:39PM 80 min England 6-1 Panama The goal was set up by one sub and scored by the other. Henderson, acting captain, gives the players a rollicking and tells them to step it back up. England 6 - 1 Panama (Felipe Baloy, 78 min) 2:38PM 78 min England 6-1 Panama And that goal is greeted more raucously than any of the preceding six by the crowd who have embraced their hordes of Panamanian guests. 2:37PM GOAL!! England 6-1 Panama Baloy - the 37-year-old - does what Torres didn't, connects with a sliding half-volley, this lone from about 8m when England's offside trap falls apart from a free-kick on the left. Poor defending. Crisp finish. 2:35PM 75 min England 6-0 Panama Rodriguez sprints between Walker and Young and gets to it first to cross. It's overhit but Rose lets it go out for a corner on the right nit knowing if there was anyone behind him. They whip in the corner and it's glanced on to the back post. Torres telescopes out his right leg and lunges to tap it in from a metre but bludgeons it wide. 2:33PM 74 min England 6-0 Panama He chips it to the far post where Maguire wins it and knocks it back across. Another touch sends it out to the 18-yard line where Henderson, shouting Loftus-Cheek to 'leave it!' hooks a roundhouse volley - a 'Ronnie Whelan' for older readers, and hooks it powerfully round the left post. 2:31PM 72 min England 6-0 Panama Ashley Young, now playing on the right, takes a free-kick from the left. England's sixth came from an inadvertent deflection off Harry Kane Credit: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images 2:28PM 68 min England 6-0 Panama Murillo loses the ball on the right and it allows time for substitutions. Rose replaces Trippier who took a knock. That's six Tykes. For Panama Barcenas and Perez go off, Baloy and Arroyo come on. 2:26PM 65 min England 6-0 Panama Barcenas darts down the inside right channel and has a chance from a tight angle but Pickford is out smartly to blocktackle him and Stones and Walker deal with the ball comfortably. Here comes another Yorkshireman in Rose. White shirts, white rose. 2:24PM 63 min England 6-0 Panama Harry Kane is now the leading scorer in the tournament and the third England World Cup hat-trick man after Sir Geoff Hurst and Gary Lineker. 2:22PM 60 min England 6-0 Panama No, the goal stands. Loftus-Cheek's shot hits Kane's heel and balloons over the keeper. That;s his last touch. Kane is going off to be replaced by Vardy and Lingard will be replaced by Delph. This is not England any more. It's Yorkshire v Panama. England 6 - 0 Panama (Harry Kane, 62 min) 2:20PM GOAL!! England 6-0 Panama Kane has his hat-trick. VAR might scrub this off, though. 2:19PM 60 min England 5-0 Panama Panama move the ball to the right and back again as England set themselves in compact defensive lines to win the ball back. Stones has three runners upfield but doesn't make the right choice. 2:17PM 58 min England 5-0 Panama Panama continue to engage in some after-tackle filth, hands in faces, sly kicks and digs. 2:16PM 56 min England 5-0 Panama Pickford taps it to Walker who plays it up to Henderson and he gives Kane a hare to chase with a long ball up the inside-right channel. Escobar, who has improved, gets there first. 2:15PM 55 min England 5-0 Panama No criticism that England have not resumed as they finished the half. They're trying to find their rhythm. 2:13PM 54 min England 5-0 Panama Fingers burnt by the penalty, they keep their hands largely to themselves this time. But Trippier's centre is well-defended. Possession: England vs Panama 2:12PM 52 min England 5-0 Panama With all the caveats about how useless Panama have been defensively and in the final third, Sterling is playing very well, adopting some excellent positions and playing some penetrating passes. England have a throw on the right and give it to Loftus-Cheek who tries to round Escobar by the byline but is tackled. England corner. Panama;s defenders are warned again. 2:09PM 50 min England 5-0 Panama Kane has the ball on halfway and Sterling hurtles out of the blocks beyond the defence when Kane releases it. Brilliant run but Kane's pass was too heavy. They had beaten the offside trap but the throughball was too close to Penedo who pelted out to win the race with Sterling. 2:07PM 48 min England 5-0 Panama But Barcenas misjudges Perez's run and plays the wrong pass into the box. England pounce on it and set off on a rapid counter. 2:06PM 47 min England 5-0 Panama Panama are passing the ball around slowly, keen, one thinks, not to be humiliated further. They inject some pace now and work a triangle up the right. 2:05PM 46 min England 5-0 Panama England attack up the right, Loftus-Cheek and Trippier combining well and crossing to the back post for Kane who beat Torres but cannot squeeze an attempt on goal. 2:02PM Praise indeed What can i say, unbelievable! #WorldCup— Sir Geoff Hurst (@TheGeoffHurst) June 24, 2018 1:58PM John Stones's second and Harry Kane's second John Stones scores his second England goal Credit: AP Photo/Victor Caivano And here's Harry Kane's second penalty. He went the same way but even if the keeper had it would have amputated his right hand at the wrist. Harry Kane scores his fourth World Cup goal of 2018 Credit: REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado 1:55PM Half-time reading Here's a gallery of the worst teams at international tournaments. Here's Lingard's goal and Sterling deserves great praise for his cute pass: Jesse Lingard puts England 3-0 up Credit: REUTERS/Matthew Childs Jesse Lingard celebrates after scoring his first World Cup goal Credit: AP Photo/Matthias Schrader 1:50PM Sorry went too early - it's only half-time of course Here's Paul Hayward on the first goal: "Grappling in the box looks clever until you ignore the runner, as Panama did there with John Stones, who darted between wrestling matches to put England in front.@ 1:49PM Half-time What a terrific first-half performance form England. They lead a World Cup game 5-0 and there's still 45 minutes to come. If Panama finish with 11 men I'm a Dutchman. 1:48PM 45+1 min England 5-0 Panama Maguire is smacked in the mouth by Cooper who swings his arm as they leap. That looked deliberate. Panama are losing all discipline and the plot. Looks like they'll go down swinging, literally. Dirty devils. 1:47PM 44 min England 5-0 Panama So Kane joins Lukaku and Ronaldo on four goals apiece. Goal: England ( 45 + 1 min ) 1:46PM GOAL! England 5-0 Panama Escobar and Torres pantomime disapproval at the penalty and are booked which eats up more time for Kane to settle himself. But he isn't fazed. He torpedoes it into the same place. 1:44PM England penalty! Kane is being grappled at a corner. The referee warns the players not to do it three times but they don't listen. Godoy tries to bodyslam Kane. 1:43PM 40 min England 4-0 Panama Amazing. Henderson receives the pass on the edge of the penalty area back to goal and hooks a cross to Kane beyond the right post. He nods it across to Sterling whose header from a couple of metres is saved by Penedo and Stones is first to the rebound on the right and forces his header into the roof of the net. England 4 - 0 Panama (John Stones, 40 min) 1:40PM GOAL!! England 4-0 Panama John Stones from a perfectly-executed free-kick routine. 1:39PM 36 min England 3-0 Panama Lingard, battered from pillar to post for the first 15 minutes, glides in from the left to take Sterling's stabbed pass and bends a venomous shot from the left side of the D around the onrushing, panicking defenders and into the top right corner of the goal. This is a bit like England v Poland from 1986. England 3 - 0 Panama (Jesse Lingard, 36 min) Goal: England ( 36 min ) 1:36PM GOAL!! England 3-0 Panama Lingard with a lovely right-foot shot from 20m, steered into the top corner. 1:35PM 33 min England 2-0 Panama Lingard bails Maguire out at the back with a diligent and dogged tracking run after Maguire loses his position. He has many attributes Maguire but he needs too screw the nut. There are too many errors. 1:34PM 30 min England 2-0 Panama England free-kick 35m out. Trippier will take. The break affords Murphy and Mowbray some time for golf banter. Trippier strikes it well, curling it deep beyond the back post where it is met by Maguire's run. He heads it back across goal and over the other post. He should have squared it to his team-mates in the middle or gone for goal but it turned into neither one thing or the other. Harry Kane strikes the penalty Credit: JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images 1:30PM 28 min England 2-0 Panama Much better from Panama who enjoy a couple of minutes of sinuous movement and sharp passing. They work an opening through Cooper and Perez for Rodriguez to run on to a threaded pass in the box, to the left. He has Godoy peeling off his marker and free but lashes a shot from an acute angle into orbit. What a waste. 1:29PM 26 min England 2-0 Panama Young penalised for kicking Cooper where the sun doesn't shine as he raised his leg to control a bouncing ball. Henderson hooks a lob over the back four for Sterling who wins it but was offside. Ruben Loftus-Cheek has been booked for a foul just after the third kick-off. Here's Kane putting the penalty in something my son and his schoofriends call 'top bins': Goal: England ( 22 min ) Harry Kane buries England's second from the spot Credit: Jan Kruger/Getty Images) 1:25PM 24 min England 2-0 Panama Panama's strategy seems to be to inject as much needle into this as possible, after all sorts of niggly fouls and delaying tactics, they complain that England take too long in their celebrations, this after forestalling the taking of the pen by almost 150 seconds. 1:23PM 22 min England 2-0 Panama Blimey! That was some penalty. He almost ripped the net with his thunderfoot. 1:22PM GOAL!! England 2-0 Panama Yes he can, despite some shoving from Barcenas on Lingard on the 18-yard line and Gomez trying to spook the taker. Smashes it into the top-right corner. 1:21PM No offside So Kane will take the penalty. Can he score in his fifth successive match for England? 1:20PM England penalty! Lingard bundled over by Escobar and Torres as he ran down the inside-right channel. VAR is checking whether he was offside. 1:19PM 18 min England 1-0 Panama Torres kicks across Sterling's foot and catches his studs. He goes down screaming blue murder until the ref stops the game for his self-inflicted pain. England 1 - 0 Panama (John Stones, 8 min) 1:18PM 16 min England 1-0 Panama For the third time Panama exploit hesitation from Young and Maguire on the left of England's defence to dial up the speed and shift the ball inside quickly. Barcenas, striding forward down the inside-left channel, meets the pass from Murillo and bends a left-foot shot that has Pickford scrambling across goal and diving but it trims the outside of the side-netting. Close, though. 1:15PM 14 min England 1-0 Panama Dawdling by Torres invites Kane twice to have a run at the defence but he can't keep the ball under control and the opposition recover. Here's Stones' goal: Stones puts England into the lead Credit: Alex Morton/Getty Images 1:13PM 12 min England 1-0 Panama England lose possession cheaply from the free-kick, Maguire's poise and precision absent so far. Barcenas accelerates away from him and into the box. Walker clears up the first mess but England cause another that Panama's haste squanders. Walker's lunge stopped Perez tapping in at the back post. 1:11PM 11 min England 1-0 Panama Cooper lunges in at Lingard just past halfway and clatters into his shin pad malevolently. Yellow card. 1:10PM 9 min England 1-0 Panama Maguire and Kane were being grappled and obstructed with octopus arms but Stones wriggled free of his assailant and stooped to steer in a bullet header from Trippier's fine corner. 1:08PM GOAL! England 1-0 Panama John Stones buries a header from the penalty spot. 1:08PM 7 min England 0-0 Panama Good pass from Walker, diagonally out to the right flank, for Trippier's clever run and teh full-back wins a corner. 1:07PM 6 min England 0-0 Panama Panama's tempo has caught England on the hop a bit and Rodriguez, the victim of Henderson's foul, is felled again as they snap into tackles. The free-kick is taken too long and England come back upfield but at no great pace. 1:06PM 5 min England 0-0 Panama Panama take the free-kick into the box Kane heads clear and Barcenas wallops a 25m shot over the bar. Then Panama exploit the short goalkick and Maguire's poor pass to break down the left and find space for Godoy to shoot and he too thrashes it high and wide. Terrible finish but England invited the pressure with dozy play there. 1:04PM 3 min England 0-0 Panama After 90secs treatment Lingard is passed fit to continue and Panama restart, knocking it down the left where Henderson is penalised for a strong tackle. 1:03PM 2 min England 0-0 Panama And drags a pass back from the byline to Lingard whose first touch is clumsy and he has to go up to try to win it back in the air. Gomez elbows him in the mouth as they challenge for it but the referee deems it accidental. He did swing his arm back but he isn't penalised. 1:02PM 1 min England 0-0 Panama Panama 's huddle finally breaks up and England kick-off, attacking to the left and overloaded on the right flank. They roll it back to Stones and the three players on the right bomb forward but they play it short and move it to the left and back again. Trippier slips a pass past Davis and Loftus-Cheek rounds him. 12:59PM Two minutes to go The players chat and shake their legs. 12:57PM Some Panama fans and players Have gone for the full Dallaglio, moist eyed and bellowing it out. Tune. 12:56PM England stand with their arms across each other's shoulders For the national anthem and when it ends Harry Kane shouts 'Come on!, Come on!' There are far more Panama fans there than England's and they sing lustily along. 12:52PM Jesse Lingard Is being interviewed by Gabby Logan and is asked to do his Scouse and Cockney accents. The first is passable, the second risible. Pace Dr Johnson: It's not done well; but you are surprised to find it done at all. 12:47PM Pre-hydration routines This really should be the match shirt. Harry Kane takes a swig Credit: Maja Hitij - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images 12:45PM The temperature is heading up 34C Gareth Southgate says he will be using England's hydration strategy but there will be no official water breaks. On the Brexit scale 34C is 93F so he will have to employ his substitutes judiciously. "We think we will have the vast majority of the play, which is good in this heat, but we have to move the ball quickly and use width intelligently. The prize for today is to qualify with a game to spare but we have to concentrate on our performance. We need to be patient." 12:36PM Alan Shearer and Gary Lineker Have just embraced and jumped up and down, a la Chandler and Joey, in imitation of the excitement of the Panama World Cup panel. Them Shearer reveals that he has had a word with Harry Kane and told him to speak to the referee about holding at corners before they are taken. Now the BBC is using Joy Divsion's Day of the Lords for a montage. I applaud their taste but it's sacrilege to have people talking over it. Music is to be listened to, not deployed as background. 12:28PM Those starting XIs in black and white and their records England (3-1-4-1-1) Pickford; Walker, Stones, Maguire; Henderson; Trippier, Loftus-Cheek, Lingard, Young; Sterling; Kane. World Cup record: England Panama (4-5-1) Penedo; Murillo, R Torres, Escobar, Davis; Barcenas, Cooper, Gomez, Godoy, J Rodriguez; Perez. World Cup record: Panama Referee Gehad Grisha (History) 12:21PM England wear white, Panama red See how our Anna Wintour, Thom Gibbs, assesses the strips: World Cup kits ranked 12:20PM Spoiler alert Ninety minutes' ebb and flow can be a bit of a distraction for some. If you'd like to know the final score now, have a go on the Telegraph's ingenious AI forecaster: World Cup 2018 Simulator Single Game 12:08PM The heat is oppressive Jason Burt reports: The air conditioning in the England dressing room has been turned up to the maximum ahead of kick-off against Panama in an attempt to keep the players as cool as possible before the game starts. The players will also be given a fresh kit at half-time and iced towels to try and control their body temperatures with the temperatures on the pitch here in Nizhny Novgorod soaring towards the high 30 degrees celsius. The England medical staff are confident that the air conditioning in the dressing room will help although there may be a concern that the dry air could affect the breathing of the players, especially those susceptible to asthma. However the medics do not believe this will be a problem with dehumidifiers in use and, because the stadium is new, an air conditioning system which means it is ice cold inside the dressing room. In previous matches in such conditions England have also used fans inside the dressing room with players wearing ice vests as they warmed up but the more light-weight training gear is believed to be sufficient this time. Sometimes kit is also sprayed with a cooling agent and water to also help. A big issue will be hydration. Players will be urged to take on board as much fluid as possible and to hydrate at every opportunity during the match. The design of the stadium means that around half of the pitch will be in shade at kick-off but heat will undoubtedly be a factor. Gareth Southgate acknowledges the England supporters before the game Credit: REUTERS/Matthew Childs It may be roasting but Southgate's not taking off that weskit for anyone. Deux bieres et un pastis, garçon, s'il-vous plait. 12:04PM England make one change Ruben Loftus-Cheek comes in for Dele Alli and will partner Jesse Lingard in the midfield duo ahead of Jordan Henderson. Raheem Sterling starts and Marcus Rashford will continue as an impact sub. He's a terrific talent, Rashford, but I can see the sense in employing his impact as a substitute and his understanding of the opportunities the role provides - he seems more aware of them than Sterling and his better control in tight areas can turn tired defenders. If Sterling does his job and keeps running hard down the channels, Rashford can cash in later on. 11:59AM England team confirmed Here's the #ThreeLions teamsheet for today's game, as @rubey_lcheek comes in to replace @dele_official. �� pic.twitter.com/HztXwZSp0B— England (@England) June 24, 2018 11:58AM How England should go about their business today Here's our 140-cap columnist's take: What England must get right on and off the pitch to beat Panama and advance in this World Cup 11:55AM And another well-wisher Whose original intention was to retire at the end of this, his fourth World Cup, but wisely decided to call it a day 10 months early: Come on @England!! #ThreeLions— Wayne Rooney (@WayneRooney) June 24, 2018 11:52AM Panama avoid team sheet melodrama By naming an unchanged XI for today's match 24 hours early: Panama Penedo; Murillo, Roman Torres, Escobar, Davis; Barcenas, Cooper, Gomez, Godoy, Jose Luis Rodriguez; Perez. Substitutes Calderon, Cummings, Gabriel Torres, Diaz, Machado, Pimentel, Arroyo, Ovalle, Tejada, Avila, Baloy, Alex Rodriguez. Pointers from the Belgium game - Murillo is pretty good, Roman Torres is an ox, Barcenas a snapper and young Rodriguez is going to be a fine player. 11:46AM England fans begin to arrive at the stadium Flying the flag Credit: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire Robert Mendick and Wil Crisp report: "Travelling England fans have never been so middle-class. Nizhny Novgorod, a city on the Volga once so sensitive it was ‘closed’ to visitors in Soviet times, was laid siege on Saturday by a small army of England fans made up of lecturers, chartered accountants, investment bankers, company CEOs and the like. Read the rest of the article here ... [The game's gone] 11:39AM A man, a plan ... a palindrome Opposition research - plenty of troubling stuff that comes under that category in today's newspapers. This is far more wholesome: 16 things you didn't know about Panama 11:32AM England alumni reporting for duty This is what it is all about. Come on England!!!!!! ������ #ENGPANpic.twitter.com/3Gul6XnOh7— Ian Wright (@IanWright0) June 24, 2018 Arms up for a victory today! Come on @England �������������� ����‍♂ #bbcworldcup#russia2018#ENGPANpic.twitter.com/zOSzN5tISx— Alan Shearer (@alanshearer) June 24, 2018 The guys wearing @england shirt today feel like a group who have an understanding of what the manager wants from them & who believe in all he asks. A recipe for good days ahead. Let’s go ������ #england#worldcup#ENG#3lionspic.twitter.com/cRyonsKbcW— Rio Ferdinand (@rioferdy5) June 24, 2018 11:26AM Ruben Loftus-Cheek should make his first World Cup start Here's what Ruud Gullit had to say about him last September: "I always loved this guy, also when he was at Chelsea. I saw him playing yesterday as well. “He’s so influential and I think the more he plays, the better he gets. He knows how to play his game, he knows how to go forward. Ruben Loftus-Cheek is expected to start in place of Dele Alli Credit: David Ramos - FIFA “I want him in the centre, he needs to have the ball. Technical, strong, he is a fantastic player. He is the one who has the brains. “He’s a future England player, this one. I really believe in this boy, he’s a good player." Here's what Paul Hayward has to say about his selection: Ruben Loftus-Cheek can carry the flag for England's thwarted generation 11:13AM England missed a spectacular night in St Petersburg People watch fireworks and a brig with scarlet sails on the Neva River during the Scarlet Sails festivities marking school graduation in St Petersburg Credit: Photo/Dmitri Lovetsky 11:07AM Team news Matt Scott reports that England will make only one change rather than the anticipated two and that Raheem Sterling, scorer of 18 Premier League goals and provider of 11 Premier League assists en route to the title last year, has been retained in the starting XI. Read the full story here. Raheem Sterling will start his fourth World Cup match for England and second in succession in Nizhny Novgorod against Panama Credit: Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images 10:55AM England's qualification game In an intriguing twist to Wonderful World, Gareth Southgate adapted the words of Sam Cooke, Herb Alpert and Lou Adler to say history is not the important thing for this team’. Biology? Science book? The French they took? Word came there none. The only thing that matters, he says, is making their own history and they can certainly share an achievement today if they defeat Panama and join ‘Ron’s 22’ from 1982 and Sven’s band of Baden-Baden Charlie Big Potatoes from 2006 as England sides who have won their opening two group games at a World Cup. The England manager, by contrast with his players, is a student of history (no word on geography, trigonometry, algebra or what a slide rule is for). Southgate is known to the friends he grew up with at Crystal Palace as ‘'Nord’, a name bestowed on him by Wally Downes, but it is one that reflects the observational sharpness of a dressing-room wit. The young Gareth, with his eight O-levels and relatively affluent upbringing in Crawley, contrasted markedly with his more cocky and shrewdly streetwise South London contemporaries in the Palace youth team. His considered, unhurried way of speaking reminded Downes of Denis Norden, erstwhile co-writer of Take It From Here and a regular TV face hosting It’ll be Alright on the Night and speaking with his mouth full while selling Nuttall’s Mintoes. In an age when anyone in the game who spoke measuredly or enjoyed reading was instantly derided as ‘Prof’ or ‘Brains’, a descendant of the old Army contempt for ‘book learning’ characterised in It Ain’t Half Hot Mum’s ‘Mr La-Di-Dah Gunner Graham’, ‘Nord’ was a cut above. World Cup 2018 | The best of the Telegraph's coverage It stuck but his greenness did not. With the help of the goalkeeper Andy Woodman, the Hush Puppies and Ronnie Corbett golf sweaters that were so mocked behind his back were eased out and a lifelong friendship chronicled in a joint autobiography, Woody and Nord, nurtured them both. Southgate’s intelligence and application benefited him, too, and he became the youngest full-time captain in the country in 1993-94, the season he led Palace back into the Premier League. After Palace’s relegation in 1995, Southgate left in the summer for Aston Villa where he expected to join Andy Townsend and Ian Taylor in his usual central midfield role. So did Brian Little, the man who signed him for £2.5 million, but a fortnight later could not resist buying Mark Draper when Leicester finally agreed to sell. Little, an underrated, strangely neglected manager, put him between Ugo Ehiogu and Paul McGrath in a back-three, a move so successful that England called him up after only eight games in the position. Not what he seems: Gareth Southgate Credit: Matthias Hangst/Getty Images When Des Walker lost his aura of impregnability in the early Nineties, England reverted to type at the back, ‘head-on-a-stick’ centre-halfs, as Gary Lineker called them, or export maypoles, the static object around which foreigners would dance. Terry Venables wanted something more progressive, a centre-back who was comfortable moving out of defence to pick up opponents attacking from deeper positions. Southgate flourished in the role and, despite the penalty miss in the Euro 96 semi-final that will forever shadow him, continued to perform astutely in Glenn Hoddle’s sides, never better than during the 0-0 draw with Italy that secured qualification for the 1998 World Cup. His game continued to evolve well into his thirties, becoming as accomplished an orthodox central defender in a back-four as he had been in a three and it is a testament to his quality and durability that when Rio Ferdinand was banned for missing a drugs test in 2003, Sir Alex Ferguson immediately tried to sign the 33-year-old from Middlesbrough. How England can get the job done against physical Panama Looking back it seems obvious that he was born to manage but given that he has moved at the Football Association from Head of Elite Development to Under-21 head coach to England manager, it is odd to recall that he succeeded Steve McClaren at the Riverside without a Pro Licence, in the face of much opposition from the League Managers Association, and had to qualify on the job. Southgate looks the model of a modern coach, even down to the DH Lawrence beard - cosmopolitan, flexible and cerebral. Yet there are echoes too of Malcolm Allison and Dave Sexton, whose undervalued toughness complemented their sprightly creativity and aptitude for teaching. But don’t be fooled by appearance. Twice in the past he has identified that inspiration is key - first when he witheringly said of Eriksson’s half-time team-talk when England had just conceded a stoppage-time equaliser in the 2002 World Cup quarter-final: “We were expecting Winston Churchill and instead got Iain Duncan Smith.” And then again in 2006 when advocating a successor for Eriksson: “I want an Englishman who’s going to say: ‘Remember Churchill.’” If anyone in Nizhny Novgorod hears strains of ‘We shall fight on the beaches’ delivered in the extraordinary, deliberate tones of Denis Norden this afternoon, there can be only one culprit: a man who continues to defy all preconceptions. As for Panama, who fought bravely against Belgium, kettled them and hobbled them with some cynical and wild tackles, the 30C heat in the city once known as Gorky after Maxim, though Sorrento and Capri had similar claims over the writer, should have a greater toll on much older legs. They are a veteran side, a tough side and play with genuinely intimidating muscular athleticism. Any thoughts that they may trial a new approach here have been thoroughly debunked by their veteran defensive midfielder Gabriel Gomez. “We are men, we are aggressive,” he said. “Football is played with aggression, with desire. We are a team that knows how to play and when we have to fight, we fight.” For all that, they are pretty enlightened technically if not always tactically and can open up a defence with decent movement - at no great pace - and some inspired passing angles. Against Belgium they were unable to commit runners consistently to help out their lone 37-year-old forward and settled for an attritional scrap that frustrated world-class talents such as Eden Hazard and Kevin De Bruyne and made them look pedestrian. It took a terrific strike from Dries Mertens to prise Panama’s vice-grip around their throats early in the second half after a stultifying first 45 minutes. Class will out but England and their supporters will have to be patient.
Harry Kane scores hat-trick as England hit Panama for six to secure World Cup knock-out qualification
Group standings and permutations You are the VAR: Think you can do better than the World Cup referees? Test yourself here Get Telegraph Football WhatsApp for in-match analysis and talking points throughout the World Cup Jim White: Fantastic fans and where to find them at World Cup 2018 ​There have been so many times when England were such a tactically flat, stressed-out bunch that they could squeeze the joy out of battering even the meekest opposition, so against Panama you had to rub your eyes at the general levels of fun being had. This was England as we rarely see them, the game won in the first half, a place in the second round with a match to spare and a general feeling of abandon that anything could happen. Harry Kane notched only the third World Cup hat-trick in English history, and then there was an unfamiliar competence observed on the basics of the game, especially two set-piece goals created for John Stones that demonstrated actual planning. Everything that could go right for England did although they never felt lucky and they chuckled at Kane’s third that ricocheted off his heel while he was looking the other way. Somewhere in the Moscow outskirts one could only guess at the grand disdain Cristiano Ronaldo will have felt at being supplanted as the tournament’s top scorer in that manner. It hardly needs saying that this was England’s biggest World Cup win but it was also World Cup football as enjoyment rather than the usual torture. Afterwards, Gareth Southgate conjured up the modern English pastoral when he said he was glad to have delivered goals for a public watching at home on a “warm Sunday afternoon”. A great vision of barbecues ablaze, televisions repositioned and six times a boozy roar across the back gardens. Out in the scorching mid-afternoon of Nizhny Novgorod, an industrial goliath east of Moscow, England looked strangely at ease in a foreign land: with the heat, with the pressure of being the favourites, with the rhythm of tournament football. They once got to half-time against Andorra in Barcelona in a Euro 2008 qualifier without sticking a goal past the part-timers of the ski resort nation and yet this time they had buried the first within nine minutes. Later the Panama coach would excuse his players their tactical naivety and their relentless corner routine grappling by proclaiming that the nation had made history with their first World Cup goal from substitute Felipe Badoy. “We are virgins!” Hernan Dario Gomez said. “We have been born before the due date! We are debutants. We have to celebrate what we have done.” Yet the team ranked 55th in the world edged out the United States on their way to qualification. What mattered was the performance was good from England, and the greediness with which they helped themselves to five before half-time showed a little frission of pleasure at being the bullies for once. Southgate called it “ruthlessness” and there was something very smart about the way in which Stones swept through the pack unmarked to head in the first while Panama stuck doggedly to their gameplan of trying to spear-tackle Harry Maguire at every dead ball situation. England permutations | Who could they face in knockout stages? Southgate credited his strikers’ coach Allan Russell for the finessing of set-pieces and the Scot has done good work, especially with the fourth that was worked back and forth across the box before Stones nodded in his second. Jesse Lingard won the penalty for Kane’s first, and curled in the third after an exchange with Raheem Sterling. Kane won his second penalty himself just before half-time with Anibal Godoy trying to coerce him in the penalty area with all the subtlety of a new pub landlord breaking up his first fight. Both Kane penalties were dispatched with a viciousness that spoke of a confidence in that particular art - which is also unusual when it comes to England. They went in five goals up. The Panama captain Roman Torres, a big man who also nurtured a Maguire preoccupation in the first half, beckoned his team-mates together for a chat on the pitch. There was a conversation, although sadly not the full Phil Brown routine. Kieran Trippier departed in the second half with a minor strain but he had done enough to underline his new pre-eminence from dead balls. It was he who picked out Stones from a corner for the first, and Trippier then found Lingard before he was fouled for the first of two penalties. Southgate made a place for his understudy right-back in this new formation and Trippier’s range of delivery ticks all the boxes. The last group game against Belgium in Kaliningrad on Thursday, with its full complement of England fans in the Russian exclave on the Gulf of Finland will not be the decisive match it could have been. Southgate said later his preoccupation was “squad harmony” and giving chances to those who have not played much, which will include the three unused outfield players, Gary Cahill, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Phil Jones. There is the tricky question of whether first or second place in Group G will open up the better route for England, identically matched with Belgium and in first place by virtue of disciplinary record. With Romelu Lukaku nursing an injury and Kane potentially rested it could yet be a strange hand of poker that both managers play. England have been here before, hedging their bets on the last group game and came out the worse for it. That was at Euro 2016 when the momentum of a win over Wales in the second group game was squandered when Roy Hodgson rested key players for the final game against Slovakia. England were pitched into a fateful second round tie against Iceland rather than Northern Ireland and the rest is so many bad memories. Both Southgate and Roberto Martinez have said they want to win the game although we wait to see. Kane’s third cannoned off him, a Ruben Loftus-Cheek shot heading in another direction, and Southgate immediately replaced him with Jamie Vardy. Fabian Delph played his first minutes in place of Lingard and Trippier was later substituted for Danny Rose. This is the shape of the England team that is likely to play against Belgium. The last time England showed anything like this promise in a tournament, at Euro 2004, it was the third group game that they lost Rooney to injury so perhaps caution will be Southgate’s guiding light. Even so, they lit a fuse against lowly Panama. Unlike so many of their predecessors at tournaments, England feel part of this one - scoring goals, forcing others to notice them. When he took the job on a permanent basis, Southgate recalled watching a highlights reel of the 2014 World Cup at a Fifa draw and noticing with horror that not once did it feature England, so meagre had their efforts been at that tournament. Already England are on the highlights reel for 2018. They have scored eight goals in two games and have the tournament’s current top striker. Having hit this kind of pace it would be a shame to see it peter out against Belgium before they embark on the second round. They might not have the best squad at the tournament but they have some form at last and the confidence flowing from that is of the kind we have not seen in years. 3:57PM Well, this is something Even if Loftus-Cheek's pass was really a shot: 25 - There were 25 uninterrupted passes played by England before their 6th goal today; the longest sequence for a World Cup goal since 1966 & one more pass than Esteban Cambiasso's goal for Argentina v Serbia in 2006 (24). Fortunate.#Eng#EngPan#WorldCuppic.twitter.com/pBnHr1EEKr— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) June 24, 2018 3:55PM How they stand 3:46PM The captain speaks again Professional. Clinical. Bring on Belgium and the knockout rounds. �� #ThreeLions#WorldCuppic.twitter.com/QXSsHNoejq— Harry Kane (@HKane) June 24, 2018 3:24PM Gareth Southgate speaks "I didn’t like the performance. Well, I didn’t like the start, and I didn’t like the goal at the end, but I guess the bits in the middle were pretty good. I think we were a little bit anxious at the beginning. We played some really good stuff after 35, 40 minutes. "The second half is difficult. We talked about the importance of one more goal to be top of the group, which is why the goal at the end is disappointing. But it’s really rewarding to see how well they’re playing, and how much they’re enjoying their football. "Big moments for Jess Lingard today, of course great for the captain to get his hat-trick which made it easier to take him off. [Was he OK about coming off?] Probably not but I've got a group to look after and there were some heavy tackles flyinhg about. "We said before the game, no more yellow cards. That was a key part of the second half, definitely. "We want to keep momentum, so we’ll have to have a think about the team we want to put out [against Belgium]. There’s an opportunity as well that players that need a match, but also we want to keep winning football matches. It’s a nice decision to have." 3:21PM Breaking news about England's anthem for the Belgium game It's been changed to this for Messrs Walker, Stones, Maguire, Rose, Delph and Vardy: 3:18PM Ruben Loftus-Cheek has a word "To win 6-1 in the World Cup is fantastic. I’m delighted with that. I think we want to put on a good performance for the fans, but also for ourselves. "For such a young captain [Harry is] so vocal. I think everyone respects him massively, what he’s done for Tottenham and bringing it in for England. Ruben Loftus-Cheek made his first World Cup start and it was his shot that Harry Kane deflected in for his hat-trick Credit: AP Photo/Alastair Grant "We work on set pieces a lot, and to see it coming good in the games when we prepare so much for it. It’s such a big factor in games, we put in so much work and we’re glad that it keeps coming out on the pitch." 3:14PM Ashley Young takes the mic "The togetherness I’ve seen is incredible. Off the pitch everybody mixes with each other. Everybody wants the ball, nobody shies away from the ball. We’ve got to keep on doing that, keep showing our confidence and keep playing the way we have. The start of something good Credit: JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images "We’ve just got to keep our feet on the ground and keep working hard in training. This could be the start of something good. 3:10PM Relive the match in a minute 3:09PM Here are Ben Rumsby's ratings England vs Panama player ratings 3:08PM Jesse Lingard speaks I thrive in that role. It's great to be around the lads. There's a great team spirit. The confidence is flowing, I don't see why not [we can't go all the way] but we take each game as it comes. [You don't seem very exuberant] I'm always like this in interviews. 3:06PM Opta's statistical pointers England have won both of their opening two group stage games at a World Cup tournament for the third time, also doing so in 1982 and 2006. This was England’s biggest ever win in a major tournament match (World Cup and European Championships). This was only the fifth occasion a side had scored five goals before half-time in a World Cup match, and the first since Germany did so against Brazil in the 2014 semi-final. England scored as many goals in this match as they had in their previous seven World Cup matches combined (6). Only in 1966 (11) have England scored more goals in a single World Cup tournament than they have in 2018 (8, same as 1954 and 1990). John Stones became the first England defender to score two goals in a single World Cup match. Harry Kane is only the third England player to score a hat-trick in a World Cup match, after Geoff Hurst vs Germany in the 1966 final and Gary Lineker vs Poland in 1986. England striker Harry Kane is the first player to have scored at least twice in both of his first two ever World Cup appearances since Poland’s Grzegorz Lato in 1974. Lato went on to win the Golden Boot at that tournament. England’s Harry Kane is now the leading scorer at the 2018 World Cup with five goals. He’s scored with all five of his shots on target in the tournament. 3:02PM Harry Kane speaks Fantastic. So proud of the boys. Just enjoying being here.They started pretty well but we've been working on the setpieces and it all came together. The match ball is one of my lucky ones but I'll take it. It's been brilliant, both sets of fans. Ours have always been great but it's what the World Cup is all about. We're not going to get too far ahead of ourselves but you have to believe. There's a long way to go but we have to stick to our game plan. A bit disappointed to concede at the end. We'll go into Belgium looking for a win but let's see what happens. Now we'll rest, recover and get ready for next week. 2:57PM Here's your chance to rate the players England player rater 2:53PM Full time England 6-1 Panama A hat-trick for Kane, two for Stones and a screamer from Lingard give England their record victory in tournament football. They led 5-0 at half-time and then squeezed the game, harboured their reserves and celebrate a famous victory. 2:51PM 90+2 min England 6-1 Panama The game has pretty much petered out in the second half but I suppose that is evidence of clever game management and resource protection by England. Lingard, a picture of joy, juggles a plastic cup with his feet while sitting on the bench. 2:49PM 90 min England 6-1 Panama Young's cross is flicked on towards the centre of goal and Stones, on a hat-trick, just fails to connect with a stabbed finish. Penedo gobbles it up gratefully. We'll have four more minutes. 2:48PM 89 min England 6-1 Panama There are horns and cow bells contributing to the cacophony. England have a free kick about 35m out, left of centre. Young will take. 2:46PM 87 min England 6-1 Panama Vardy sprints down the right, whitewash on the soles of his feet, and beats Davis. He fires over a deep cross outside the box for Delph who has to jump high to trap it, which he accomplishes but lands awkwardly so mis-hist his pass. 2:44PM 86 min England 6-1 Panama 'Nothing wrong with a boring second half,' says Danny Murphy and, of course, it makes sense. Rashford for Lingard, though, would have been something worth seeing. 2:42PM 84 min England 6-1 Panama England pass it around slowly around the back - killing time and the game understandably. Vardy has hardly touched the ball. 2:41PM 82 min England 6-1 Panama Sterling tacks in from the left flank on to his right foot and sends a curving shot whistling past the far post. Hit very sweetly on the instep but not enough whip to bring it back in. 2:39PM 80 min England 6-1 Panama The goal was set up by one sub and scored by the other. Henderson, acting captain, gives the players a rollicking and tells them to step it back up. England 6 - 1 Panama (Felipe Baloy, 78 min) 2:38PM 78 min England 6-1 Panama And that goal is greeted more raucously than any of the preceding six by the crowd who have embraced their hordes of Panamanian guests. 2:37PM GOAL!! England 6-1 Panama Baloy - the 37-year-old - does what Torres didn't, connects with a sliding half-volley, this lone from about 8m when England's offside trap falls apart from a free-kick on the left. Poor defending. Crisp finish. 2:35PM 75 min England 6-0 Panama Rodriguez sprints between Walker and Young and gets to it first to cross. It's overhit but Rose lets it go out for a corner on the right nit knowing if there was anyone behind him. They whip in the corner and it's glanced on to the back post. Torres telescopes out his right leg and lunges to tap it in from a metre but bludgeons it wide. 2:33PM 74 min England 6-0 Panama He chips it to the far post where Maguire wins it and knocks it back across. Another touch sends it out to the 18-yard line where Henderson, shouting Loftus-Cheek to 'leave it!' hooks a roundhouse volley - a 'Ronnie Whelan' for older readers, and hooks it powerfully round the left post. 2:31PM 72 min England 6-0 Panama Ashley Young, now playing on the right, takes a free-kick from the left. England's sixth came from an inadvertent deflection off Harry Kane Credit: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images 2:28PM 68 min England 6-0 Panama Murillo loses the ball on the right and it allows time for substitutions. Rose replaces Trippier who took a knock. That's six Tykes. For Panama Barcenas and Perez go off, Baloy and Arroyo come on. 2:26PM 65 min England 6-0 Panama Barcenas darts down the inside right channel and has a chance from a tight angle but Pickford is out smartly to blocktackle him and Stones and Walker deal with the ball comfortably. Here comes another Yorkshireman in Rose. White shirts, white rose. 2:24PM 63 min England 6-0 Panama Harry Kane is now the leading scorer in the tournament and the third England World Cup hat-trick man after Sir Geoff Hurst and Gary Lineker. 2:22PM 60 min England 6-0 Panama No, the goal stands. Loftus-Cheek's shot hits Kane's heel and balloons over the keeper. That;s his last touch. Kane is going off to be replaced by Vardy and Lingard will be replaced by Delph. This is not England any more. It's Yorkshire v Panama. England 6 - 0 Panama (Harry Kane, 62 min) 2:20PM GOAL!! England 6-0 Panama Kane has his hat-trick. VAR might scrub this off, though. 2:19PM 60 min England 5-0 Panama Panama move the ball to the right and back again as England set themselves in compact defensive lines to win the ball back. Stones has three runners upfield but doesn't make the right choice. 2:17PM 58 min England 5-0 Panama Panama continue to engage in some after-tackle filth, hands in faces, sly kicks and digs. 2:16PM 56 min England 5-0 Panama Pickford taps it to Walker who plays it up to Henderson and he gives Kane a hare to chase with a long ball up the inside-right channel. Escobar, who has improved, gets there first. 2:15PM 55 min England 5-0 Panama No criticism that England have not resumed as they finished the half. They're trying to find their rhythm. 2:13PM 54 min England 5-0 Panama Fingers burnt by the penalty, they keep their hands largely to themselves this time. But Trippier's centre is well-defended. Possession: England vs Panama 2:12PM 52 min England 5-0 Panama With all the caveats about how useless Panama have been defensively and in the final third, Sterling is playing very well, adopting some excellent positions and playing some penetrating passes. England have a throw on the right and give it to Loftus-Cheek who tries to round Escobar by the byline but is tackled. England corner. Panama;s defenders are warned again. 2:09PM 50 min England 5-0 Panama Kane has the ball on halfway and Sterling hurtles out of the blocks beyond the defence when Kane releases it. Brilliant run but Kane's pass was too heavy. They had beaten the offside trap but the throughball was too close to Penedo who pelted out to win the race with Sterling. 2:07PM 48 min England 5-0 Panama But Barcenas misjudges Perez's run and plays the wrong pass into the box. England pounce on it and set off on a rapid counter. 2:06PM 47 min England 5-0 Panama Panama are passing the ball around slowly, keen, one thinks, not to be humiliated further. They inject some pace now and work a triangle up the right. 2:05PM 46 min England 5-0 Panama England attack up the right, Loftus-Cheek and Trippier combining well and crossing to the back post for Kane who beat Torres but cannot squeeze an attempt on goal. 2:02PM Praise indeed What can i say, unbelievable! #WorldCup— Sir Geoff Hurst (@TheGeoffHurst) June 24, 2018 1:58PM John Stones's second and Harry Kane's second John Stones scores his second England goal Credit: AP Photo/Victor Caivano And here's Harry Kane's second penalty. He went the same way but even if the keeper had it would have amputated his right hand at the wrist. Harry Kane scores his fourth World Cup goal of 2018 Credit: REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado 1:55PM Half-time reading Here's a gallery of the worst teams at international tournaments. Here's Lingard's goal and Sterling deserves great praise for his cute pass: Jesse Lingard puts England 3-0 up Credit: REUTERS/Matthew Childs Jesse Lingard celebrates after scoring his first World Cup goal Credit: AP Photo/Matthias Schrader 1:50PM Sorry went too early - it's only half-time of course Here's Paul Hayward on the first goal: "Grappling in the box looks clever until you ignore the runner, as Panama did there with John Stones, who darted between wrestling matches to put England in front.@ 1:49PM Half-time What a terrific first-half performance form England. They lead a World Cup game 5-0 and there's still 45 minutes to come. If Panama finish with 11 men I'm a Dutchman. 1:48PM 45+1 min England 5-0 Panama Maguire is smacked in the mouth by Cooper who swings his arm as they leap. That looked deliberate. Panama are losing all discipline and the plot. Looks like they'll go down swinging, literally. Dirty devils. 1:47PM 44 min England 5-0 Panama So Kane joins Lukaku and Ronaldo on four goals apiece. Goal: England ( 45 + 1 min ) 1:46PM GOAL! England 5-0 Panama Escobar and Torres pantomime disapproval at the penalty and are booked which eats up more time for Kane to settle himself. But he isn't fazed. He torpedoes it into the same place. 1:44PM England penalty! Kane is being grappled at a corner. The referee warns the players not to do it three times but they don't listen. Godoy tries to bodyslam Kane. 1:43PM 40 min England 4-0 Panama Amazing. Henderson receives the pass on the edge of the penalty area back to goal and hooks a cross to Kane beyond the right post. He nods it across to Sterling whose header from a couple of metres is saved by Penedo and Stones is first to the rebound on the right and forces his header into the roof of the net. England 4 - 0 Panama (John Stones, 40 min) 1:40PM GOAL!! England 4-0 Panama John Stones from a perfectly-executed free-kick routine. 1:39PM 36 min England 3-0 Panama Lingard, battered from pillar to post for the first 15 minutes, glides in from the left to take Sterling's stabbed pass and bends a venomous shot from the left side of the D around the onrushing, panicking defenders and into the top right corner of the goal. This is a bit like England v Poland from 1986. England 3 - 0 Panama (Jesse Lingard, 36 min) Goal: England ( 36 min ) 1:36PM GOAL!! England 3-0 Panama Lingard with a lovely right-foot shot from 20m, steered into the top corner. 1:35PM 33 min England 2-0 Panama Lingard bails Maguire out at the back with a diligent and dogged tracking run after Maguire loses his position. He has many attributes Maguire but he needs too screw the nut. There are too many errors. 1:34PM 30 min England 2-0 Panama England free-kick 35m out. Trippier will take. The break affords Murphy and Mowbray some time for golf banter. Trippier strikes it well, curling it deep beyond the back post where it is met by Maguire's run. He heads it back across goal and over the other post. He should have squared it to his team-mates in the middle or gone for goal but it turned into neither one thing or the other. Harry Kane strikes the penalty Credit: JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images 1:30PM 28 min England 2-0 Panama Much better from Panama who enjoy a couple of minutes of sinuous movement and sharp passing. They work an opening through Cooper and Perez for Rodriguez to run on to a threaded pass in the box, to the left. He has Godoy peeling off his marker and free but lashes a shot from an acute angle into orbit. What a waste. 1:29PM 26 min England 2-0 Panama Young penalised for kicking Cooper where the sun doesn't shine as he raised his leg to control a bouncing ball. Henderson hooks a lob over the back four for Sterling who wins it but was offside. Ruben Loftus-Cheek has been booked for a foul just after the third kick-off. Here's Kane putting the penalty in something my son and his schoofriends call 'top bins': Goal: England ( 22 min ) Harry Kane buries England's second from the spot Credit: Jan Kruger/Getty Images) 1:25PM 24 min England 2-0 Panama Panama's strategy seems to be to inject as much needle into this as possible, after all sorts of niggly fouls and delaying tactics, they complain that England take too long in their celebrations, this after forestalling the taking of the pen by almost 150 seconds. 1:23PM 22 min England 2-0 Panama Blimey! That was some penalty. He almost ripped the net with his thunderfoot. 1:22PM GOAL!! England 2-0 Panama Yes he can, despite some shoving from Barcenas on Lingard on the 18-yard line and Gomez trying to spook the taker. Smashes it into the top-right corner. 1:21PM No offside So Kane will take the penalty. Can he score in his fifth successive match for England? 1:20PM England penalty! Lingard bundled over by Escobar and Torres as he ran down the inside-right channel. VAR is checking whether he was offside. 1:19PM 18 min England 1-0 Panama Torres kicks across Sterling's foot and catches his studs. He goes down screaming blue murder until the ref stops the game for his self-inflicted pain. England 1 - 0 Panama (John Stones, 8 min) 1:18PM 16 min England 1-0 Panama For the third time Panama exploit hesitation from Young and Maguire on the left of England's defence to dial up the speed and shift the ball inside quickly. Barcenas, striding forward down the inside-left channel, meets the pass from Murillo and bends a left-foot shot that has Pickford scrambling across goal and diving but it trims the outside of the side-netting. Close, though. 1:15PM 14 min England 1-0 Panama Dawdling by Torres invites Kane twice to have a run at the defence but he can't keep the ball under control and the opposition recover. Here's Stones' goal: Stones puts England into the lead Credit: Alex Morton/Getty Images 1:13PM 12 min England 1-0 Panama England lose possession cheaply from the free-kick, Maguire's poise and precision absent so far. Barcenas accelerates away from him and into the box. Walker clears up the first mess but England cause another that Panama's haste squanders. Walker's lunge stopped Perez tapping in at the back post. 1:11PM 11 min England 1-0 Panama Cooper lunges in at Lingard just past halfway and clatters into his shin pad malevolently. Yellow card. 1:10PM 9 min England 1-0 Panama Maguire and Kane were being grappled and obstructed with octopus arms but Stones wriggled free of his assailant and stooped to steer in a bullet header from Trippier's fine corner. 1:08PM GOAL! England 1-0 Panama John Stones buries a header from the penalty spot. 1:08PM 7 min England 0-0 Panama Good pass from Walker, diagonally out to the right flank, for Trippier's clever run and teh full-back wins a corner. 1:07PM 6 min England 0-0 Panama Panama's tempo has caught England on the hop a bit and Rodriguez, the victim of Henderson's foul, is felled again as they snap into tackles. The free-kick is taken too long and England come back upfield but at no great pace. 1:06PM 5 min England 0-0 Panama Panama take the free-kick into the box Kane heads clear and Barcenas wallops a 25m shot over the bar. Then Panama exploit the short goalkick and Maguire's poor pass to break down the left and find space for Godoy to shoot and he too thrashes it high and wide. Terrible finish but England invited the pressure with dozy play there. 1:04PM 3 min England 0-0 Panama After 90secs treatment Lingard is passed fit to continue and Panama restart, knocking it down the left where Henderson is penalised for a strong tackle. 1:03PM 2 min England 0-0 Panama And drags a pass back from the byline to Lingard whose first touch is clumsy and he has to go up to try to win it back in the air. Gomez elbows him in the mouth as they challenge for it but the referee deems it accidental. He did swing his arm back but he isn't penalised. 1:02PM 1 min England 0-0 Panama Panama 's huddle finally breaks up and England kick-off, attacking to the left and overloaded on the right flank. They roll it back to Stones and the three players on the right bomb forward but they play it short and move it to the left and back again. Trippier slips a pass past Davis and Loftus-Cheek rounds him. 12:59PM Two minutes to go The players chat and shake their legs. 12:57PM Some Panama fans and players Have gone for the full Dallaglio, moist eyed and bellowing it out. Tune. 12:56PM England stand with their arms across each other's shoulders For the national anthem and when it ends Harry Kane shouts 'Come on!, Come on!' There are far more Panama fans there than England's and they sing lustily along. 12:52PM Jesse Lingard Is being interviewed by Gabby Logan and is asked to do his Scouse and Cockney accents. The first is passable, the second risible. Pace Dr Johnson: It's not done well; but you are surprised to find it done at all. 12:47PM Pre-hydration routines This really should be the match shirt. Harry Kane takes a swig Credit: Maja Hitij - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images 12:45PM The temperature is heading up 34C Gareth Southgate says he will be using England's hydration strategy but there will be no official water breaks. On the Brexit scale 34C is 93F so he will have to employ his substitutes judiciously. "We think we will have the vast majority of the play, which is good in this heat, but we have to move the ball quickly and use width intelligently. The prize for today is to qualify with a game to spare but we have to concentrate on our performance. We need to be patient." 12:36PM Alan Shearer and Gary Lineker Have just embraced and jumped up and down, a la Chandler and Joey, in imitation of the excitement of the Panama World Cup panel. Them Shearer reveals that he has had a word with Harry Kane and told him to speak to the referee about holding at corners before they are taken. Now the BBC is using Joy Divsion's Day of the Lords for a montage. I applaud their taste but it's sacrilege to have people talking over it. Music is to be listened to, not deployed as background. 12:28PM Those starting XIs in black and white and their records England (3-1-4-1-1) Pickford; Walker, Stones, Maguire; Henderson; Trippier, Loftus-Cheek, Lingard, Young; Sterling; Kane. World Cup record: England Panama (4-5-1) Penedo; Murillo, R Torres, Escobar, Davis; Barcenas, Cooper, Gomez, Godoy, J Rodriguez; Perez. World Cup record: Panama Referee Gehad Grisha (History) 12:21PM England wear white, Panama red See how our Anna Wintour, Thom Gibbs, assesses the strips: World Cup kits ranked 12:20PM Spoiler alert Ninety minutes' ebb and flow can be a bit of a distraction for some. If you'd like to know the final score now, have a go on the Telegraph's ingenious AI forecaster: World Cup 2018 Simulator Single Game 12:08PM The heat is oppressive Jason Burt reports: The air conditioning in the England dressing room has been turned up to the maximum ahead of kick-off against Panama in an attempt to keep the players as cool as possible before the game starts. The players will also be given a fresh kit at half-time and iced towels to try and control their body temperatures with the temperatures on the pitch here in Nizhny Novgorod soaring towards the high 30 degrees celsius. The England medical staff are confident that the air conditioning in the dressing room will help although there may be a concern that the dry air could affect the breathing of the players, especially those susceptible to asthma. However the medics do not believe this will be a problem with dehumidifiers in use and, because the stadium is new, an air conditioning system which means it is ice cold inside the dressing room. In previous matches in such conditions England have also used fans inside the dressing room with players wearing ice vests as they warmed up but the more light-weight training gear is believed to be sufficient this time. Sometimes kit is also sprayed with a cooling agent and water to also help. A big issue will be hydration. Players will be urged to take on board as much fluid as possible and to hydrate at every opportunity during the match. The design of the stadium means that around half of the pitch will be in shade at kick-off but heat will undoubtedly be a factor. Gareth Southgate acknowledges the England supporters before the game Credit: REUTERS/Matthew Childs It may be roasting but Southgate's not taking off that weskit for anyone. Deux bieres et un pastis, garçon, s'il-vous plait. 12:04PM England make one change Ruben Loftus-Cheek comes in for Dele Alli and will partner Jesse Lingard in the midfield duo ahead of Jordan Henderson. Raheem Sterling starts and Marcus Rashford will continue as an impact sub. He's a terrific talent, Rashford, but I can see the sense in employing his impact as a substitute and his understanding of the opportunities the role provides - he seems more aware of them than Sterling and his better control in tight areas can turn tired defenders. If Sterling does his job and keeps running hard down the channels, Rashford can cash in later on. 11:59AM England team confirmed Here's the #ThreeLions teamsheet for today's game, as @rubey_lcheek comes in to replace @dele_official. �� pic.twitter.com/HztXwZSp0B— England (@England) June 24, 2018 11:58AM How England should go about their business today Here's our 140-cap columnist's take: What England must get right on and off the pitch to beat Panama and advance in this World Cup 11:55AM And another well-wisher Whose original intention was to retire at the end of this, his fourth World Cup, but wisely decided to call it a day 10 months early: Come on @England!! #ThreeLions— Wayne Rooney (@WayneRooney) June 24, 2018 11:52AM Panama avoid team sheet melodrama By naming an unchanged XI for today's match 24 hours early: Panama Penedo; Murillo, Roman Torres, Escobar, Davis; Barcenas, Cooper, Gomez, Godoy, Jose Luis Rodriguez; Perez. Substitutes Calderon, Cummings, Gabriel Torres, Diaz, Machado, Pimentel, Arroyo, Ovalle, Tejada, Avila, Baloy, Alex Rodriguez. Pointers from the Belgium game - Murillo is pretty good, Roman Torres is an ox, Barcenas a snapper and young Rodriguez is going to be a fine player. 11:46AM England fans begin to arrive at the stadium Flying the flag Credit: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire Robert Mendick and Wil Crisp report: "Travelling England fans have never been so middle-class. Nizhny Novgorod, a city on the Volga once so sensitive it was ‘closed’ to visitors in Soviet times, was laid siege on Saturday by a small army of England fans made up of lecturers, chartered accountants, investment bankers, company CEOs and the like. Read the rest of the article here ... [The game's gone] 11:39AM A man, a plan ... a palindrome Opposition research - plenty of troubling stuff that comes under that category in today's newspapers. This is far more wholesome: 16 things you didn't know about Panama 11:32AM England alumni reporting for duty This is what it is all about. Come on England!!!!!! ������ #ENGPANpic.twitter.com/3Gul6XnOh7— Ian Wright (@IanWright0) June 24, 2018 Arms up for a victory today! Come on @England �������������� ����‍♂ #bbcworldcup#russia2018#ENGPANpic.twitter.com/zOSzN5tISx— Alan Shearer (@alanshearer) June 24, 2018 The guys wearing @england shirt today feel like a group who have an understanding of what the manager wants from them & who believe in all he asks. A recipe for good days ahead. Let’s go ������ #england#worldcup#ENG#3lionspic.twitter.com/cRyonsKbcW— Rio Ferdinand (@rioferdy5) June 24, 2018 11:26AM Ruben Loftus-Cheek should make his first World Cup start Here's what Ruud Gullit had to say about him last September: "I always loved this guy, also when he was at Chelsea. I saw him playing yesterday as well. “He’s so influential and I think the more he plays, the better he gets. He knows how to play his game, he knows how to go forward. Ruben Loftus-Cheek is expected to start in place of Dele Alli Credit: David Ramos - FIFA “I want him in the centre, he needs to have the ball. Technical, strong, he is a fantastic player. He is the one who has the brains. “He’s a future England player, this one. I really believe in this boy, he’s a good player." Here's what Paul Hayward has to say about his selection: Ruben Loftus-Cheek can carry the flag for England's thwarted generation 11:13AM England missed a spectacular night in St Petersburg People watch fireworks and a brig with scarlet sails on the Neva River during the Scarlet Sails festivities marking school graduation in St Petersburg Credit: Photo/Dmitri Lovetsky 11:07AM Team news Matt Scott reports that England will make only one change rather than the anticipated two and that Raheem Sterling, scorer of 18 Premier League goals and provider of 11 Premier League assists en route to the title last year, has been retained in the starting XI. Read the full story here. Raheem Sterling will start his fourth World Cup match for England and second in succession in Nizhny Novgorod against Panama Credit: Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images 10:55AM England's qualification game In an intriguing twist to Wonderful World, Gareth Southgate adapted the words of Sam Cooke, Herb Alpert and Lou Adler to say history is not the important thing for this team’. Biology? Science book? The French they took? Word came there none. The only thing that matters, he says, is making their own history and they can certainly share an achievement today if they defeat Panama and join ‘Ron’s 22’ from 1982 and Sven’s band of Baden-Baden Charlie Big Potatoes from 2006 as England sides who have won their opening two group games at a World Cup. The England manager, by contrast with his players, is a student of history (no word on geography, trigonometry, algebra or what a slide rule is for). Southgate is known to the friends he grew up with at Crystal Palace as ‘'Nord’, a name bestowed on him by Wally Downes, but it is one that reflects the observational sharpness of a dressing-room wit. The young Gareth, with his eight O-levels and relatively affluent upbringing in Crawley, contrasted markedly with his more cocky and shrewdly streetwise South London contemporaries in the Palace youth team. His considered, unhurried way of speaking reminded Downes of Denis Norden, erstwhile co-writer of Take It From Here and a regular TV face hosting It’ll be Alright on the Night and speaking with his mouth full while selling Nuttall’s Mintoes. In an age when anyone in the game who spoke measuredly or enjoyed reading was instantly derided as ‘Prof’ or ‘Brains’, a descendant of the old Army contempt for ‘book learning’ characterised in It Ain’t Half Hot Mum’s ‘Mr La-Di-Dah Gunner Graham’, ‘Nord’ was a cut above. World Cup 2018 | The best of the Telegraph's coverage It stuck but his greenness did not. With the help of the goalkeeper Andy Woodman, the Hush Puppies and Ronnie Corbett golf sweaters that were so mocked behind his back were eased out and a lifelong friendship chronicled in a joint autobiography, Woody and Nord, nurtured them both. Southgate’s intelligence and application benefited him, too, and he became the youngest full-time captain in the country in 1993-94, the season he led Palace back into the Premier League. After Palace’s relegation in 1995, Southgate left in the summer for Aston Villa where he expected to join Andy Townsend and Ian Taylor in his usual central midfield role. So did Brian Little, the man who signed him for £2.5 million, but a fortnight later could not resist buying Mark Draper when Leicester finally agreed to sell. Little, an underrated, strangely neglected manager, put him between Ugo Ehiogu and Paul McGrath in a back-three, a move so successful that England called him up after only eight games in the position. Not what he seems: Gareth Southgate Credit: Matthias Hangst/Getty Images When Des Walker lost his aura of impregnability in the early Nineties, England reverted to type at the back, ‘head-on-a-stick’ centre-halfs, as Gary Lineker called them, or export maypoles, the static object around which foreigners would dance. Terry Venables wanted something more progressive, a centre-back who was comfortable moving out of defence to pick up opponents attacking from deeper positions. Southgate flourished in the role and, despite the penalty miss in the Euro 96 semi-final that will forever shadow him, continued to perform astutely in Glenn Hoddle’s sides, never better than during the 0-0 draw with Italy that secured qualification for the 1998 World Cup. His game continued to evolve well into his thirties, becoming as accomplished an orthodox central defender in a back-four as he had been in a three and it is a testament to his quality and durability that when Rio Ferdinand was banned for missing a drugs test in 2003, Sir Alex Ferguson immediately tried to sign the 33-year-old from Middlesbrough. How England can get the job done against physical Panama Looking back it seems obvious that he was born to manage but given that he has moved at the Football Association from Head of Elite Development to Under-21 head coach to England manager, it is odd to recall that he succeeded Steve McClaren at the Riverside without a Pro Licence, in the face of much opposition from the League Managers Association, and had to qualify on the job. Southgate looks the model of a modern coach, even down to the DH Lawrence beard - cosmopolitan, flexible and cerebral. Yet there are echoes too of Malcolm Allison and Dave Sexton, whose undervalued toughness complemented their sprightly creativity and aptitude for teaching. But don’t be fooled by appearance. Twice in the past he has identified that inspiration is key - first when he witheringly said of Eriksson’s half-time team-talk when England had just conceded a stoppage-time equaliser in the 2002 World Cup quarter-final: “We were expecting Winston Churchill and instead got Iain Duncan Smith.” And then again in 2006 when advocating a successor for Eriksson: “I want an Englishman who’s going to say: ‘Remember Churchill.’” If anyone in Nizhny Novgorod hears strains of ‘We shall fight on the beaches’ delivered in the extraordinary, deliberate tones of Denis Norden this afternoon, there can be only one culprit: a man who continues to defy all preconceptions. As for Panama, who fought bravely against Belgium, kettled them and hobbled them with some cynical and wild tackles, the 30C heat in the city once known as Gorky after Maxim, though Sorrento and Capri had similar claims over the writer, should have a greater toll on much older legs. They are a veteran side, a tough side and play with genuinely intimidating muscular athleticism. Any thoughts that they may trial a new approach here have been thoroughly debunked by their veteran defensive midfielder Gabriel Gomez. “We are men, we are aggressive,” he said. “Football is played with aggression, with desire. We are a team that knows how to play and when we have to fight, we fight.” For all that, they are pretty enlightened technically if not always tactically and can open up a defence with decent movement - at no great pace - and some inspired passing angles. Against Belgium they were unable to commit runners consistently to help out their lone 37-year-old forward and settled for an attritional scrap that frustrated world-class talents such as Eden Hazard and Kevin De Bruyne and made them look pedestrian. It took a terrific strike from Dries Mertens to prise Panama’s vice-grip around their throats early in the second half after a stultifying first 45 minutes. Class will out but England and their supporters will have to be patient.
Group standings and permutations You are the VAR: Think you can do better than the World Cup referees? Test yourself here Get Telegraph Football WhatsApp for in-match analysis and talking points throughout the World Cup Jim White: Fantastic fans and where to find them at World Cup 2018 ​There have been so many times when England were such a tactically flat, stressed-out bunch that they could squeeze the joy out of battering even the meekest opposition, so against Panama you had to rub your eyes at the general levels of fun being had. This was England as we rarely see them, the game won in the first half, a place in the second round with a match to spare and a general feeling of abandon that anything could happen. Harry Kane notched only the third World Cup hat-trick in English history, and then there was an unfamiliar competence observed on the basics of the game, especially two set-piece goals created for John Stones that demonstrated actual planning. Everything that could go right for England did although they never felt lucky and they chuckled at Kane’s third that ricocheted off his heel while he was looking the other way. Somewhere in the Moscow outskirts one could only guess at the grand disdain Cristiano Ronaldo will have felt at being supplanted as the tournament’s top scorer in that manner. It hardly needs saying that this was England’s biggest World Cup win but it was also World Cup football as enjoyment rather than the usual torture. Afterwards, Gareth Southgate conjured up the modern English pastoral when he said he was glad to have delivered goals for a public watching at home on a “warm Sunday afternoon”. A great vision of barbecues ablaze, televisions repositioned and six times a boozy roar across the back gardens. Out in the scorching mid-afternoon of Nizhny Novgorod, an industrial goliath east of Moscow, England looked strangely at ease in a foreign land: with the heat, with the pressure of being the favourites, with the rhythm of tournament football. They once got to half-time against Andorra in Barcelona in a Euro 2008 qualifier without sticking a goal past the part-timers of the ski resort nation and yet this time they had buried the first within nine minutes. Later the Panama coach would excuse his players their tactical naivety and their relentless corner routine grappling by proclaiming that the nation had made history with their first World Cup goal from substitute Felipe Badoy. “We are virgins!” Hernan Dario Gomez said. “We have been born before the due date! We are debutants. We have to celebrate what we have done.” Yet the team ranked 55th in the world edged out the United States on their way to qualification. What mattered was the performance was good from England, and the greediness with which they helped themselves to five before half-time showed a little frission of pleasure at being the bullies for once. Southgate called it “ruthlessness” and there was something very smart about the way in which Stones swept through the pack unmarked to head in the first while Panama stuck doggedly to their gameplan of trying to spear-tackle Harry Maguire at every dead ball situation. England permutations | Who could they face in knockout stages? Southgate credited his strikers’ coach Allan Russell for the finessing of set-pieces and the Scot has done good work, especially with the fourth that was worked back and forth across the box before Stones nodded in his second. Jesse Lingard won the penalty for Kane’s first, and curled in the third after an exchange with Raheem Sterling. Kane won his second penalty himself just before half-time with Anibal Godoy trying to coerce him in the penalty area with all the subtlety of a new pub landlord breaking up his first fight. Both Kane penalties were dispatched with a viciousness that spoke of a confidence in that particular art - which is also unusual when it comes to England. They went in five goals up. The Panama captain Roman Torres, a big man who also nurtured a Maguire preoccupation in the first half, beckoned his team-mates together for a chat on the pitch. There was a conversation, although sadly not the full Phil Brown routine. Kieran Trippier departed in the second half with a minor strain but he had done enough to underline his new pre-eminence from dead balls. It was he who picked out Stones from a corner for the first, and Trippier then found Lingard before he was fouled for the first of two penalties. Southgate made a place for his understudy right-back in this new formation and Trippier’s range of delivery ticks all the boxes. The last group game against Belgium in Kaliningrad on Thursday, with its full complement of England fans in the Russian exclave on the Gulf of Finland will not be the decisive match it could have been. Southgate said later his preoccupation was “squad harmony” and giving chances to those who have not played much, which will include the three unused outfield players, Gary Cahill, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Phil Jones. There is the tricky question of whether first or second place in Group G will open up the better route for England, identically matched with Belgium and in first place by virtue of disciplinary record. With Romelu Lukaku nursing an injury and Kane potentially rested it could yet be a strange hand of poker that both managers play. England have been here before, hedging their bets on the last group game and came out the worse for it. That was at Euro 2016 when the momentum of a win over Wales in the second group game was squandered when Roy Hodgson rested key players for the final game against Slovakia. England were pitched into a fateful second round tie against Iceland rather than Northern Ireland and the rest is so many bad memories. Both Southgate and Roberto Martinez have said they want to win the game although we wait to see. Kane’s third cannoned off him, a Ruben Loftus-Cheek shot heading in another direction, and Southgate immediately replaced him with Jamie Vardy. Fabian Delph played his first minutes in place of Lingard and Trippier was later substituted for Danny Rose. This is the shape of the England team that is likely to play against Belgium. The last time England showed anything like this promise in a tournament, at Euro 2004, it was the third group game that they lost Rooney to injury so perhaps caution will be Southgate’s guiding light. Even so, they lit a fuse against lowly Panama. Unlike so many of their predecessors at tournaments, England feel part of this one - scoring goals, forcing others to notice them. When he took the job on a permanent basis, Southgate recalled watching a highlights reel of the 2014 World Cup at a Fifa draw and noticing with horror that not once did it feature England, so meagre had their efforts been at that tournament. Already England are on the highlights reel for 2018. They have scored eight goals in two games and have the tournament’s current top striker. Having hit this kind of pace it would be a shame to see it peter out against Belgium before they embark on the second round. They might not have the best squad at the tournament but they have some form at last and the confidence flowing from that is of the kind we have not seen in years. 3:57PM Well, this is something Even if Loftus-Cheek's pass was really a shot: 25 - There were 25 uninterrupted passes played by England before their 6th goal today; the longest sequence for a World Cup goal since 1966 & one more pass than Esteban Cambiasso's goal for Argentina v Serbia in 2006 (24). Fortunate.#Eng#EngPan#WorldCuppic.twitter.com/pBnHr1EEKr— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) June 24, 2018 3:55PM How they stand 3:46PM The captain speaks again Professional. Clinical. Bring on Belgium and the knockout rounds. �� #ThreeLions#WorldCuppic.twitter.com/QXSsHNoejq— Harry Kane (@HKane) June 24, 2018 3:24PM Gareth Southgate speaks "I didn’t like the performance. Well, I didn’t like the start, and I didn’t like the goal at the end, but I guess the bits in the middle were pretty good. I think we were a little bit anxious at the beginning. We played some really good stuff after 35, 40 minutes. "The second half is difficult. We talked about the importance of one more goal to be top of the group, which is why the goal at the end is disappointing. But it’s really rewarding to see how well they’re playing, and how much they’re enjoying their football. "Big moments for Jess Lingard today, of course great for the captain to get his hat-trick which made it easier to take him off. [Was he OK about coming off?] Probably not but I've got a group to look after and there were some heavy tackles flyinhg about. "We said before the game, no more yellow cards. That was a key part of the second half, definitely. "We want to keep momentum, so we’ll have to have a think about the team we want to put out [against Belgium]. There’s an opportunity as well that players that need a match, but also we want to keep winning football matches. It’s a nice decision to have." 3:21PM Breaking news about England's anthem for the Belgium game It's been changed to this for Messrs Walker, Stones, Maguire, Rose, Delph and Vardy: 3:18PM Ruben Loftus-Cheek has a word "To win 6-1 in the World Cup is fantastic. I’m delighted with that. I think we want to put on a good performance for the fans, but also for ourselves. "For such a young captain [Harry is] so vocal. I think everyone respects him massively, what he’s done for Tottenham and bringing it in for England. Ruben Loftus-Cheek made his first World Cup start and it was his shot that Harry Kane deflected in for his hat-trick Credit: AP Photo/Alastair Grant "We work on set pieces a lot, and to see it coming good in the games when we prepare so much for it. It’s such a big factor in games, we put in so much work and we’re glad that it keeps coming out on the pitch." 3:14PM Ashley Young takes the mic "The togetherness I’ve seen is incredible. Off the pitch everybody mixes with each other. Everybody wants the ball, nobody shies away from the ball. We’ve got to keep on doing that, keep showing our confidence and keep playing the way we have. The start of something good Credit: JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images "We’ve just got to keep our feet on the ground and keep working hard in training. This could be the start of something good. 3:10PM Relive the match in a minute 3:09PM Here are Ben Rumsby's ratings England vs Panama player ratings 3:08PM Jesse Lingard speaks I thrive in that role. It's great to be around the lads. There's a great team spirit. The confidence is flowing, I don't see why not [we can't go all the way] but we take each game as it comes. [You don't seem very exuberant] I'm always like this in interviews. 3:06PM Opta's statistical pointers England have won both of their opening two group stage games at a World Cup tournament for the third time, also doing so in 1982 and 2006. This was England’s biggest ever win in a major tournament match (World Cup and European Championships). This was only the fifth occasion a side had scored five goals before half-time in a World Cup match, and the first since Germany did so against Brazil in the 2014 semi-final. England scored as many goals in this match as they had in their previous seven World Cup matches combined (6). Only in 1966 (11) have England scored more goals in a single World Cup tournament than they have in 2018 (8, same as 1954 and 1990). John Stones became the first England defender to score two goals in a single World Cup match. Harry Kane is only the third England player to score a hat-trick in a World Cup match, after Geoff Hurst vs Germany in the 1966 final and Gary Lineker vs Poland in 1986. England striker Harry Kane is the first player to have scored at least twice in both of his first two ever World Cup appearances since Poland’s Grzegorz Lato in 1974. Lato went on to win the Golden Boot at that tournament. England’s Harry Kane is now the leading scorer at the 2018 World Cup with five goals. He’s scored with all five of his shots on target in the tournament. 3:02PM Harry Kane speaks Fantastic. So proud of the boys. Just enjoying being here.They started pretty well but we've been working on the setpieces and it all came together. The match ball is one of my lucky ones but I'll take it. It's been brilliant, both sets of fans. Ours have always been great but it's what the World Cup is all about. We're not going to get too far ahead of ourselves but you have to believe. There's a long way to go but we have to stick to our game plan. A bit disappointed to concede at the end. We'll go into Belgium looking for a win but let's see what happens. Now we'll rest, recover and get ready for next week. 2:57PM Here's your chance to rate the players England player rater 2:53PM Full time England 6-1 Panama A hat-trick for Kane, two for Stones and a screamer from Lingard give England their record victory in tournament football. They led 5-0 at half-time and then squeezed the game, harboured their reserves and celebrate a famous victory. 2:51PM 90+2 min England 6-1 Panama The game has pretty much petered out in the second half but I suppose that is evidence of clever game management and resource protection by England. Lingard, a picture of joy, juggles a plastic cup with his feet while sitting on the bench. 2:49PM 90 min England 6-1 Panama Young's cross is flicked on towards the centre of goal and Stones, on a hat-trick, just fails to connect with a stabbed finish. Penedo gobbles it up gratefully. We'll have four more minutes. 2:48PM 89 min England 6-1 Panama There are horns and cow bells contributing to the cacophony. England have a free kick about 35m out, left of centre. Young will take. 2:46PM 87 min England 6-1 Panama Vardy sprints down the right, whitewash on the soles of his feet, and beats Davis. He fires over a deep cross outside the box for Delph who has to jump high to trap it, which he accomplishes but lands awkwardly so mis-hist his pass. 2:44PM 86 min England 6-1 Panama 'Nothing wrong with a boring second half,' says Danny Murphy and, of course, it makes sense. Rashford for Lingard, though, would have been something worth seeing. 2:42PM 84 min England 6-1 Panama England pass it around slowly around the back - killing time and the game understandably. Vardy has hardly touched the ball. 2:41PM 82 min England 6-1 Panama Sterling tacks in from the left flank on to his right foot and sends a curving shot whistling past the far post. Hit very sweetly on the instep but not enough whip to bring it back in. 2:39PM 80 min England 6-1 Panama The goal was set up by one sub and scored by the other. Henderson, acting captain, gives the players a rollicking and tells them to step it back up. England 6 - 1 Panama (Felipe Baloy, 78 min) 2:38PM 78 min England 6-1 Panama And that goal is greeted more raucously than any of the preceding six by the crowd who have embraced their hordes of Panamanian guests. 2:37PM GOAL!! England 6-1 Panama Baloy - the 37-year-old - does what Torres didn't, connects with a sliding half-volley, this lone from about 8m when England's offside trap falls apart from a free-kick on the left. Poor defending. Crisp finish. 2:35PM 75 min England 6-0 Panama Rodriguez sprints between Walker and Young and gets to it first to cross. It's overhit but Rose lets it go out for a corner on the right nit knowing if there was anyone behind him. They whip in the corner and it's glanced on to the back post. Torres telescopes out his right leg and lunges to tap it in from a metre but bludgeons it wide. 2:33PM 74 min England 6-0 Panama He chips it to the far post where Maguire wins it and knocks it back across. Another touch sends it out to the 18-yard line where Henderson, shouting Loftus-Cheek to 'leave it!' hooks a roundhouse volley - a 'Ronnie Whelan' for older readers, and hooks it powerfully round the left post. 2:31PM 72 min England 6-0 Panama Ashley Young, now playing on the right, takes a free-kick from the left. England's sixth came from an inadvertent deflection off Harry Kane Credit: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images 2:28PM 68 min England 6-0 Panama Murillo loses the ball on the right and it allows time for substitutions. Rose replaces Trippier who took a knock. That's six Tykes. For Panama Barcenas and Perez go off, Baloy and Arroyo come on. 2:26PM 65 min England 6-0 Panama Barcenas darts down the inside right channel and has a chance from a tight angle but Pickford is out smartly to blocktackle him and Stones and Walker deal with the ball comfortably. Here comes another Yorkshireman in Rose. White shirts, white rose. 2:24PM 63 min England 6-0 Panama Harry Kane is now the leading scorer in the tournament and the third England World Cup hat-trick man after Sir Geoff Hurst and Gary Lineker. 2:22PM 60 min England 6-0 Panama No, the goal stands. Loftus-Cheek's shot hits Kane's heel and balloons over the keeper. That;s his last touch. Kane is going off to be replaced by Vardy and Lingard will be replaced by Delph. This is not England any more. It's Yorkshire v Panama. England 6 - 0 Panama (Harry Kane, 62 min) 2:20PM GOAL!! England 6-0 Panama Kane has his hat-trick. VAR might scrub this off, though. 2:19PM 60 min England 5-0 Panama Panama move the ball to the right and back again as England set themselves in compact defensive lines to win the ball back. Stones has three runners upfield but doesn't make the right choice. 2:17PM 58 min England 5-0 Panama Panama continue to engage in some after-tackle filth, hands in faces, sly kicks and digs. 2:16PM 56 min England 5-0 Panama Pickford taps it to Walker who plays it up to Henderson and he gives Kane a hare to chase with a long ball up the inside-right channel. Escobar, who has improved, gets there first. 2:15PM 55 min England 5-0 Panama No criticism that England have not resumed as they finished the half. They're trying to find their rhythm. 2:13PM 54 min England 5-0 Panama Fingers burnt by the penalty, they keep their hands largely to themselves this time. But Trippier's centre is well-defended. Possession: England vs Panama 2:12PM 52 min England 5-0 Panama With all the caveats about how useless Panama have been defensively and in the final third, Sterling is playing very well, adopting some excellent positions and playing some penetrating passes. England have a throw on the right and give it to Loftus-Cheek who tries to round Escobar by the byline but is tackled. England corner. Panama;s defenders are warned again. 2:09PM 50 min England 5-0 Panama Kane has the ball on halfway and Sterling hurtles out of the blocks beyond the defence when Kane releases it. Brilliant run but Kane's pass was too heavy. They had beaten the offside trap but the throughball was too close to Penedo who pelted out to win the race with Sterling. 2:07PM 48 min England 5-0 Panama But Barcenas misjudges Perez's run and plays the wrong pass into the box. England pounce on it and set off on a rapid counter. 2:06PM 47 min England 5-0 Panama Panama are passing the ball around slowly, keen, one thinks, not to be humiliated further. They inject some pace now and work a triangle up the right. 2:05PM 46 min England 5-0 Panama England attack up the right, Loftus-Cheek and Trippier combining well and crossing to the back post for Kane who beat Torres but cannot squeeze an attempt on goal. 2:02PM Praise indeed What can i say, unbelievable! #WorldCup— Sir Geoff Hurst (@TheGeoffHurst) June 24, 2018 1:58PM John Stones's second and Harry Kane's second John Stones scores his second England goal Credit: AP Photo/Victor Caivano And here's Harry Kane's second penalty. He went the same way but even if the keeper had it would have amputated his right hand at the wrist. Harry Kane scores his fourth World Cup goal of 2018 Credit: REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado 1:55PM Half-time reading Here's a gallery of the worst teams at international tournaments. Here's Lingard's goal and Sterling deserves great praise for his cute pass: Jesse Lingard puts England 3-0 up Credit: REUTERS/Matthew Childs Jesse Lingard celebrates after scoring his first World Cup goal Credit: AP Photo/Matthias Schrader 1:50PM Sorry went too early - it's only half-time of course Here's Paul Hayward on the first goal: "Grappling in the box looks clever until you ignore the runner, as Panama did there with John Stones, who darted between wrestling matches to put England in front.@ 1:49PM Half-time What a terrific first-half performance form England. They lead a World Cup game 5-0 and there's still 45 minutes to come. If Panama finish with 11 men I'm a Dutchman. 1:48PM 45+1 min England 5-0 Panama Maguire is smacked in the mouth by Cooper who swings his arm as they leap. That looked deliberate. Panama are losing all discipline and the plot. Looks like they'll go down swinging, literally. Dirty devils. 1:47PM 44 min England 5-0 Panama So Kane joins Lukaku and Ronaldo on four goals apiece. Goal: England ( 45 + 1 min ) 1:46PM GOAL! England 5-0 Panama Escobar and Torres pantomime disapproval at the penalty and are booked which eats up more time for Kane to settle himself. But he isn't fazed. He torpedoes it into the same place. 1:44PM England penalty! Kane is being grappled at a corner. The referee warns the players not to do it three times but they don't listen. Godoy tries to bodyslam Kane. 1:43PM 40 min England 4-0 Panama Amazing. Henderson receives the pass on the edge of the penalty area back to goal and hooks a cross to Kane beyond the right post. He nods it across to Sterling whose header from a couple of metres is saved by Penedo and Stones is first to the rebound on the right and forces his header into the roof of the net. England 4 - 0 Panama (John Stones, 40 min) 1:40PM GOAL!! England 4-0 Panama John Stones from a perfectly-executed free-kick routine. 1:39PM 36 min England 3-0 Panama Lingard, battered from pillar to post for the first 15 minutes, glides in from the left to take Sterling's stabbed pass and bends a venomous shot from the left side of the D around the onrushing, panicking defenders and into the top right corner of the goal. This is a bit like England v Poland from 1986. England 3 - 0 Panama (Jesse Lingard, 36 min) Goal: England ( 36 min ) 1:36PM GOAL!! England 3-0 Panama Lingard with a lovely right-foot shot from 20m, steered into the top corner. 1:35PM 33 min England 2-0 Panama Lingard bails Maguire out at the back with a diligent and dogged tracking run after Maguire loses his position. He has many attributes Maguire but he needs too screw the nut. There are too many errors. 1:34PM 30 min England 2-0 Panama England free-kick 35m out. Trippier will take. The break affords Murphy and Mowbray some time for golf banter. Trippier strikes it well, curling it deep beyond the back post where it is met by Maguire's run. He heads it back across goal and over the other post. He should have squared it to his team-mates in the middle or gone for goal but it turned into neither one thing or the other. Harry Kane strikes the penalty Credit: JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images 1:30PM 28 min England 2-0 Panama Much better from Panama who enjoy a couple of minutes of sinuous movement and sharp passing. They work an opening through Cooper and Perez for Rodriguez to run on to a threaded pass in the box, to the left. He has Godoy peeling off his marker and free but lashes a shot from an acute angle into orbit. What a waste. 1:29PM 26 min England 2-0 Panama Young penalised for kicking Cooper where the sun doesn't shine as he raised his leg to control a bouncing ball. Henderson hooks a lob over the back four for Sterling who wins it but was offside. Ruben Loftus-Cheek has been booked for a foul just after the third kick-off. Here's Kane putting the penalty in something my son and his schoofriends call 'top bins': Goal: England ( 22 min ) Harry Kane buries England's second from the spot Credit: Jan Kruger/Getty Images) 1:25PM 24 min England 2-0 Panama Panama's strategy seems to be to inject as much needle into this as possible, after all sorts of niggly fouls and delaying tactics, they complain that England take too long in their celebrations, this after forestalling the taking of the pen by almost 150 seconds. 1:23PM 22 min England 2-0 Panama Blimey! That was some penalty. He almost ripped the net with his thunderfoot. 1:22PM GOAL!! England 2-0 Panama Yes he can, despite some shoving from Barcenas on Lingard on the 18-yard line and Gomez trying to spook the taker. Smashes it into the top-right corner. 1:21PM No offside So Kane will take the penalty. Can he score in his fifth successive match for England? 1:20PM England penalty! Lingard bundled over by Escobar and Torres as he ran down the inside-right channel. VAR is checking whether he was offside. 1:19PM 18 min England 1-0 Panama Torres kicks across Sterling's foot and catches his studs. He goes down screaming blue murder until the ref stops the game for his self-inflicted pain. England 1 - 0 Panama (John Stones, 8 min) 1:18PM 16 min England 1-0 Panama For the third time Panama exploit hesitation from Young and Maguire on the left of England's defence to dial up the speed and shift the ball inside quickly. Barcenas, striding forward down the inside-left channel, meets the pass from Murillo and bends a left-foot shot that has Pickford scrambling across goal and diving but it trims the outside of the side-netting. Close, though. 1:15PM 14 min England 1-0 Panama Dawdling by Torres invites Kane twice to have a run at the defence but he can't keep the ball under control and the opposition recover. Here's Stones' goal: Stones puts England into the lead Credit: Alex Morton/Getty Images 1:13PM 12 min England 1-0 Panama England lose possession cheaply from the free-kick, Maguire's poise and precision absent so far. Barcenas accelerates away from him and into the box. Walker clears up the first mess but England cause another that Panama's haste squanders. Walker's lunge stopped Perez tapping in at the back post. 1:11PM 11 min England 1-0 Panama Cooper lunges in at Lingard just past halfway and clatters into his shin pad malevolently. Yellow card. 1:10PM 9 min England 1-0 Panama Maguire and Kane were being grappled and obstructed with octopus arms but Stones wriggled free of his assailant and stooped to steer in a bullet header from Trippier's fine corner. 1:08PM GOAL! England 1-0 Panama John Stones buries a header from the penalty spot. 1:08PM 7 min England 0-0 Panama Good pass from Walker, diagonally out to the right flank, for Trippier's clever run and teh full-back wins a corner. 1:07PM 6 min England 0-0 Panama Panama's tempo has caught England on the hop a bit and Rodriguez, the victim of Henderson's foul, is felled again as they snap into tackles. The free-kick is taken too long and England come back upfield but at no great pace. 1:06PM 5 min England 0-0 Panama Panama take the free-kick into the box Kane heads clear and Barcenas wallops a 25m shot over the bar. Then Panama exploit the short goalkick and Maguire's poor pass to break down the left and find space for Godoy to shoot and he too thrashes it high and wide. Terrible finish but England invited the pressure with dozy play there. 1:04PM 3 min England 0-0 Panama After 90secs treatment Lingard is passed fit to continue and Panama restart, knocking it down the left where Henderson is penalised for a strong tackle. 1:03PM 2 min England 0-0 Panama And drags a pass back from the byline to Lingard whose first touch is clumsy and he has to go up to try to win it back in the air. Gomez elbows him in the mouth as they challenge for it but the referee deems it accidental. He did swing his arm back but he isn't penalised. 1:02PM 1 min England 0-0 Panama Panama 's huddle finally breaks up and England kick-off, attacking to the left and overloaded on the right flank. They roll it back to Stones and the three players on the right bomb forward but they play it short and move it to the left and back again. Trippier slips a pass past Davis and Loftus-Cheek rounds him. 12:59PM Two minutes to go The players chat and shake their legs. 12:57PM Some Panama fans and players Have gone for the full Dallaglio, moist eyed and bellowing it out. Tune. 12:56PM England stand with their arms across each other's shoulders For the national anthem and when it ends Harry Kane shouts 'Come on!, Come on!' There are far more Panama fans there than England's and they sing lustily along. 12:52PM Jesse Lingard Is being interviewed by Gabby Logan and is asked to do his Scouse and Cockney accents. The first is passable, the second risible. Pace Dr Johnson: It's not done well; but you are surprised to find it done at all. 12:47PM Pre-hydration routines This really should be the match shirt. Harry Kane takes a swig Credit: Maja Hitij - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images 12:45PM The temperature is heading up 34C Gareth Southgate says he will be using England's hydration strategy but there will be no official water breaks. On the Brexit scale 34C is 93F so he will have to employ his substitutes judiciously. "We think we will have the vast majority of the play, which is good in this heat, but we have to move the ball quickly and use width intelligently. The prize for today is to qualify with a game to spare but we have to concentrate on our performance. We need to be patient." 12:36PM Alan Shearer and Gary Lineker Have just embraced and jumped up and down, a la Chandler and Joey, in imitation of the excitement of the Panama World Cup panel. Them Shearer reveals that he has had a word with Harry Kane and told him to speak to the referee about holding at corners before they are taken. Now the BBC is using Joy Divsion's Day of the Lords for a montage. I applaud their taste but it's sacrilege to have people talking over it. Music is to be listened to, not deployed as background. 12:28PM Those starting XIs in black and white and their records England (3-1-4-1-1) Pickford; Walker, Stones, Maguire; Henderson; Trippier, Loftus-Cheek, Lingard, Young; Sterling; Kane. World Cup record: England Panama (4-5-1) Penedo; Murillo, R Torres, Escobar, Davis; Barcenas, Cooper, Gomez, Godoy, J Rodriguez; Perez. World Cup record: Panama Referee Gehad Grisha (History) 12:21PM England wear white, Panama red See how our Anna Wintour, Thom Gibbs, assesses the strips: World Cup kits ranked 12:20PM Spoiler alert Ninety minutes' ebb and flow can be a bit of a distraction for some. If you'd like to know the final score now, have a go on the Telegraph's ingenious AI forecaster: World Cup 2018 Simulator Single Game 12:08PM The heat is oppressive Jason Burt reports: The air conditioning in the England dressing room has been turned up to the maximum ahead of kick-off against Panama in an attempt to keep the players as cool as possible before the game starts. The players will also be given a fresh kit at half-time and iced towels to try and control their body temperatures with the temperatures on the pitch here in Nizhny Novgorod soaring towards the high 30 degrees celsius. The England medical staff are confident that the air conditioning in the dressing room will help although there may be a concern that the dry air could affect the breathing of the players, especially those susceptible to asthma. However the medics do not believe this will be a problem with dehumidifiers in use and, because the stadium is new, an air conditioning system which means it is ice cold inside the dressing room. In previous matches in such conditions England have also used fans inside the dressing room with players wearing ice vests as they warmed up but the more light-weight training gear is believed to be sufficient this time. Sometimes kit is also sprayed with a cooling agent and water to also help. A big issue will be hydration. Players will be urged to take on board as much fluid as possible and to hydrate at every opportunity during the match. The design of the stadium means that around half of the pitch will be in shade at kick-off but heat will undoubtedly be a factor. Gareth Southgate acknowledges the England supporters before the game Credit: REUTERS/Matthew Childs It may be roasting but Southgate's not taking off that weskit for anyone. Deux bieres et un pastis, garçon, s'il-vous plait. 12:04PM England make one change Ruben Loftus-Cheek comes in for Dele Alli and will partner Jesse Lingard in the midfield duo ahead of Jordan Henderson. Raheem Sterling starts and Marcus Rashford will continue as an impact sub. He's a terrific talent, Rashford, but I can see the sense in employing his impact as a substitute and his understanding of the opportunities the role provides - he seems more aware of them than Sterling and his better control in tight areas can turn tired defenders. If Sterling does his job and keeps running hard down the channels, Rashford can cash in later on. 11:59AM England team confirmed Here's the #ThreeLions teamsheet for today's game, as @rubey_lcheek comes in to replace @dele_official. �� pic.twitter.com/HztXwZSp0B— England (@England) June 24, 2018 11:58AM How England should go about their business today Here's our 140-cap columnist's take: What England must get right on and off the pitch to beat Panama and advance in this World Cup 11:55AM And another well-wisher Whose original intention was to retire at the end of this, his fourth World Cup, but wisely decided to call it a day 10 months early: Come on @England!! #ThreeLions— Wayne Rooney (@WayneRooney) June 24, 2018 11:52AM Panama avoid team sheet melodrama By naming an unchanged XI for today's match 24 hours early: Panama Penedo; Murillo, Roman Torres, Escobar, Davis; Barcenas, Cooper, Gomez, Godoy, Jose Luis Rodriguez; Perez. Substitutes Calderon, Cummings, Gabriel Torres, Diaz, Machado, Pimentel, Arroyo, Ovalle, Tejada, Avila, Baloy, Alex Rodriguez. Pointers from the Belgium game - Murillo is pretty good, Roman Torres is an ox, Barcenas a snapper and young Rodriguez is going to be a fine player. 11:46AM England fans begin to arrive at the stadium Flying the flag Credit: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire Robert Mendick and Wil Crisp report: "Travelling England fans have never been so middle-class. Nizhny Novgorod, a city on the Volga once so sensitive it was ‘closed’ to visitors in Soviet times, was laid siege on Saturday by a small army of England fans made up of lecturers, chartered accountants, investment bankers, company CEOs and the like. Read the rest of the article here ... [The game's gone] 11:39AM A man, a plan ... a palindrome Opposition research - plenty of troubling stuff that comes under that category in today's newspapers. This is far more wholesome: 16 things you didn't know about Panama 11:32AM England alumni reporting for duty This is what it is all about. Come on England!!!!!! ������ #ENGPANpic.twitter.com/3Gul6XnOh7— Ian Wright (@IanWright0) June 24, 2018 Arms up for a victory today! Come on @England �������������� ����‍♂ #bbcworldcup#russia2018#ENGPANpic.twitter.com/zOSzN5tISx— Alan Shearer (@alanshearer) June 24, 2018 The guys wearing @england shirt today feel like a group who have an understanding of what the manager wants from them & who believe in all he asks. A recipe for good days ahead. Let’s go ������ #england#worldcup#ENG#3lionspic.twitter.com/cRyonsKbcW— Rio Ferdinand (@rioferdy5) June 24, 2018 11:26AM Ruben Loftus-Cheek should make his first World Cup start Here's what Ruud Gullit had to say about him last September: "I always loved this guy, also when he was at Chelsea. I saw him playing yesterday as well. “He’s so influential and I think the more he plays, the better he gets. He knows how to play his game, he knows how to go forward. Ruben Loftus-Cheek is expected to start in place of Dele Alli Credit: David Ramos - FIFA “I want him in the centre, he needs to have the ball. Technical, strong, he is a fantastic player. He is the one who has the brains. “He’s a future England player, this one. I really believe in this boy, he’s a good player." Here's what Paul Hayward has to say about his selection: Ruben Loftus-Cheek can carry the flag for England's thwarted generation 11:13AM England missed a spectacular night in St Petersburg People watch fireworks and a brig with scarlet sails on the Neva River during the Scarlet Sails festivities marking school graduation in St Petersburg Credit: Photo/Dmitri Lovetsky 11:07AM Team news Matt Scott reports that England will make only one change rather than the anticipated two and that Raheem Sterling, scorer of 18 Premier League goals and provider of 11 Premier League assists en route to the title last year, has been retained in the starting XI. Read the full story here. Raheem Sterling will start his fourth World Cup match for England and second in succession in Nizhny Novgorod against Panama Credit: Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images 10:55AM England's qualification game In an intriguing twist to Wonderful World, Gareth Southgate adapted the words of Sam Cooke, Herb Alpert and Lou Adler to say history is not the important thing for this team’. Biology? Science book? The French they took? Word came there none. The only thing that matters, he says, is making their own history and they can certainly share an achievement today if they defeat Panama and join ‘Ron’s 22’ from 1982 and Sven’s band of Baden-Baden Charlie Big Potatoes from 2006 as England sides who have won their opening two group games at a World Cup. The England manager, by contrast with his players, is a student of history (no word on geography, trigonometry, algebra or what a slide rule is for). Southgate is known to the friends he grew up with at Crystal Palace as ‘'Nord’, a name bestowed on him by Wally Downes, but it is one that reflects the observational sharpness of a dressing-room wit. The young Gareth, with his eight O-levels and relatively affluent upbringing in Crawley, contrasted markedly with his more cocky and shrewdly streetwise South London contemporaries in the Palace youth team. His considered, unhurried way of speaking reminded Downes of Denis Norden, erstwhile co-writer of Take It From Here and a regular TV face hosting It’ll be Alright on the Night and speaking with his mouth full while selling Nuttall’s Mintoes. In an age when anyone in the game who spoke measuredly or enjoyed reading was instantly derided as ‘Prof’ or ‘Brains’, a descendant of the old Army contempt for ‘book learning’ characterised in It Ain’t Half Hot Mum’s ‘Mr La-Di-Dah Gunner Graham’, ‘Nord’ was a cut above. World Cup 2018 | The best of the Telegraph's coverage It stuck but his greenness did not. With the help of the goalkeeper Andy Woodman, the Hush Puppies and Ronnie Corbett golf sweaters that were so mocked behind his back were eased out and a lifelong friendship chronicled in a joint autobiography, Woody and Nord, nurtured them both. Southgate’s intelligence and application benefited him, too, and he became the youngest full-time captain in the country in 1993-94, the season he led Palace back into the Premier League. After Palace’s relegation in 1995, Southgate left in the summer for Aston Villa where he expected to join Andy Townsend and Ian Taylor in his usual central midfield role. So did Brian Little, the man who signed him for £2.5 million, but a fortnight later could not resist buying Mark Draper when Leicester finally agreed to sell. Little, an underrated, strangely neglected manager, put him between Ugo Ehiogu and Paul McGrath in a back-three, a move so successful that England called him up after only eight games in the position. Not what he seems: Gareth Southgate Credit: Matthias Hangst/Getty Images When Des Walker lost his aura of impregnability in the early Nineties, England reverted to type at the back, ‘head-on-a-stick’ centre-halfs, as Gary Lineker called them, or export maypoles, the static object around which foreigners would dance. Terry Venables wanted something more progressive, a centre-back who was comfortable moving out of defence to pick up opponents attacking from deeper positions. Southgate flourished in the role and, despite the penalty miss in the Euro 96 semi-final that will forever shadow him, continued to perform astutely in Glenn Hoddle’s sides, never better than during the 0-0 draw with Italy that secured qualification for the 1998 World Cup. His game continued to evolve well into his thirties, becoming as accomplished an orthodox central defender in a back-four as he had been in a three and it is a testament to his quality and durability that when Rio Ferdinand was banned for missing a drugs test in 2003, Sir Alex Ferguson immediately tried to sign the 33-year-old from Middlesbrough. How England can get the job done against physical Panama Looking back it seems obvious that he was born to manage but given that he has moved at the Football Association from Head of Elite Development to Under-21 head coach to England manager, it is odd to recall that he succeeded Steve McClaren at the Riverside without a Pro Licence, in the face of much opposition from the League Managers Association, and had to qualify on the job. Southgate looks the model of a modern coach, even down to the DH Lawrence beard - cosmopolitan, flexible and cerebral. Yet there are echoes too of Malcolm Allison and Dave Sexton, whose undervalued toughness complemented their sprightly creativity and aptitude for teaching. But don’t be fooled by appearance. Twice in the past he has identified that inspiration is key - first when he witheringly said of Eriksson’s half-time team-talk when England had just conceded a stoppage-time equaliser in the 2002 World Cup quarter-final: “We were expecting Winston Churchill and instead got Iain Duncan Smith.” And then again in 2006 when advocating a successor for Eriksson: “I want an Englishman who’s going to say: ‘Remember Churchill.’” If anyone in Nizhny Novgorod hears strains of ‘We shall fight on the beaches’ delivered in the extraordinary, deliberate tones of Denis Norden this afternoon, there can be only one culprit: a man who continues to defy all preconceptions. As for Panama, who fought bravely against Belgium, kettled them and hobbled them with some cynical and wild tackles, the 30C heat in the city once known as Gorky after Maxim, though Sorrento and Capri had similar claims over the writer, should have a greater toll on much older legs. They are a veteran side, a tough side and play with genuinely intimidating muscular athleticism. Any thoughts that they may trial a new approach here have been thoroughly debunked by their veteran defensive midfielder Gabriel Gomez. “We are men, we are aggressive,” he said. “Football is played with aggression, with desire. We are a team that knows how to play and when we have to fight, we fight.” For all that, they are pretty enlightened technically if not always tactically and can open up a defence with decent movement - at no great pace - and some inspired passing angles. Against Belgium they were unable to commit runners consistently to help out their lone 37-year-old forward and settled for an attritional scrap that frustrated world-class talents such as Eden Hazard and Kevin De Bruyne and made them look pedestrian. It took a terrific strike from Dries Mertens to prise Panama’s vice-grip around their throats early in the second half after a stultifying first 45 minutes. Class will out but England and their supporters will have to be patient.
Harry Kane scores hat-trick as England hit Panama for six to secure World Cup knock-out qualification
Group standings and permutations You are the VAR: Think you can do better than the World Cup referees? Test yourself here Get Telegraph Football WhatsApp for in-match analysis and talking points throughout the World Cup Jim White: Fantastic fans and where to find them at World Cup 2018 ​There have been so many times when England were such a tactically flat, stressed-out bunch that they could squeeze the joy out of battering even the meekest opposition, so against Panama you had to rub your eyes at the general levels of fun being had. This was England as we rarely see them, the game won in the first half, a place in the second round with a match to spare and a general feeling of abandon that anything could happen. Harry Kane notched only the third World Cup hat-trick in English history, and then there was an unfamiliar competence observed on the basics of the game, especially two set-piece goals created for John Stones that demonstrated actual planning. Everything that could go right for England did although they never felt lucky and they chuckled at Kane’s third that ricocheted off his heel while he was looking the other way. Somewhere in the Moscow outskirts one could only guess at the grand disdain Cristiano Ronaldo will have felt at being supplanted as the tournament’s top scorer in that manner. It hardly needs saying that this was England’s biggest World Cup win but it was also World Cup football as enjoyment rather than the usual torture. Afterwards, Gareth Southgate conjured up the modern English pastoral when he said he was glad to have delivered goals for a public watching at home on a “warm Sunday afternoon”. A great vision of barbecues ablaze, televisions repositioned and six times a boozy roar across the back gardens. Out in the scorching mid-afternoon of Nizhny Novgorod, an industrial goliath east of Moscow, England looked strangely at ease in a foreign land: with the heat, with the pressure of being the favourites, with the rhythm of tournament football. They once got to half-time against Andorra in Barcelona in a Euro 2008 qualifier without sticking a goal past the part-timers of the ski resort nation and yet this time they had buried the first within nine minutes. Later the Panama coach would excuse his players their tactical naivety and their relentless corner routine grappling by proclaiming that the nation had made history with their first World Cup goal from substitute Felipe Badoy. “We are virgins!” Hernan Dario Gomez said. “We have been born before the due date! We are debutants. We have to celebrate what we have done.” Yet the team ranked 55th in the world edged out the United States on their way to qualification. What mattered was the performance was good from England, and the greediness with which they helped themselves to five before half-time showed a little frission of pleasure at being the bullies for once. Southgate called it “ruthlessness” and there was something very smart about the way in which Stones swept through the pack unmarked to head in the first while Panama stuck doggedly to their gameplan of trying to spear-tackle Harry Maguire at every dead ball situation. England permutations | Who could they face in knockout stages? Southgate credited his strikers’ coach Allan Russell for the finessing of set-pieces and the Scot has done good work, especially with the fourth that was worked back and forth across the box before Stones nodded in his second. Jesse Lingard won the penalty for Kane’s first, and curled in the third after an exchange with Raheem Sterling. Kane won his second penalty himself just before half-time with Anibal Godoy trying to coerce him in the penalty area with all the subtlety of a new pub landlord breaking up his first fight. Both Kane penalties were dispatched with a viciousness that spoke of a confidence in that particular art - which is also unusual when it comes to England. They went in five goals up. The Panama captain Roman Torres, a big man who also nurtured a Maguire preoccupation in the first half, beckoned his team-mates together for a chat on the pitch. There was a conversation, although sadly not the full Phil Brown routine. Kieran Trippier departed in the second half with a minor strain but he had done enough to underline his new pre-eminence from dead balls. It was he who picked out Stones from a corner for the first, and Trippier then found Lingard before he was fouled for the first of two penalties. Southgate made a place for his understudy right-back in this new formation and Trippier’s range of delivery ticks all the boxes. The last group game against Belgium in Kaliningrad on Thursday, with its full complement of England fans in the Russian exclave on the Gulf of Finland will not be the decisive match it could have been. Southgate said later his preoccupation was “squad harmony” and giving chances to those who have not played much, which will include the three unused outfield players, Gary Cahill, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Phil Jones. There is the tricky question of whether first or second place in Group G will open up the better route for England, identically matched with Belgium and in first place by virtue of disciplinary record. With Romelu Lukaku nursing an injury and Kane potentially rested it could yet be a strange hand of poker that both managers play. England have been here before, hedging their bets on the last group game and came out the worse for it. That was at Euro 2016 when the momentum of a win over Wales in the second group game was squandered when Roy Hodgson rested key players for the final game against Slovakia. England were pitched into a fateful second round tie against Iceland rather than Northern Ireland and the rest is so many bad memories. Both Southgate and Roberto Martinez have said they want to win the game although we wait to see. Kane’s third cannoned off him, a Ruben Loftus-Cheek shot heading in another direction, and Southgate immediately replaced him with Jamie Vardy. Fabian Delph played his first minutes in place of Lingard and Trippier was later substituted for Danny Rose. This is the shape of the England team that is likely to play against Belgium. The last time England showed anything like this promise in a tournament, at Euro 2004, it was the third group game that they lost Rooney to injury so perhaps caution will be Southgate’s guiding light. Even so, they lit a fuse against lowly Panama. Unlike so many of their predecessors at tournaments, England feel part of this one - scoring goals, forcing others to notice them. When he took the job on a permanent basis, Southgate recalled watching a highlights reel of the 2014 World Cup at a Fifa draw and noticing with horror that not once did it feature England, so meagre had their efforts been at that tournament. Already England are on the highlights reel for 2018. They have scored eight goals in two games and have the tournament’s current top striker. Having hit this kind of pace it would be a shame to see it peter out against Belgium before they embark on the second round. They might not have the best squad at the tournament but they have some form at last and the confidence flowing from that is of the kind we have not seen in years. 3:57PM Well, this is something Even if Loftus-Cheek's pass was really a shot: 25 - There were 25 uninterrupted passes played by England before their 6th goal today; the longest sequence for a World Cup goal since 1966 & one more pass than Esteban Cambiasso's goal for Argentina v Serbia in 2006 (24). Fortunate.#Eng#EngPan#WorldCuppic.twitter.com/pBnHr1EEKr— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) June 24, 2018 3:55PM How they stand 3:46PM The captain speaks again Professional. Clinical. Bring on Belgium and the knockout rounds. �� #ThreeLions#WorldCuppic.twitter.com/QXSsHNoejq— Harry Kane (@HKane) June 24, 2018 3:24PM Gareth Southgate speaks "I didn’t like the performance. Well, I didn’t like the start, and I didn’t like the goal at the end, but I guess the bits in the middle were pretty good. I think we were a little bit anxious at the beginning. We played some really good stuff after 35, 40 minutes. "The second half is difficult. We talked about the importance of one more goal to be top of the group, which is why the goal at the end is disappointing. But it’s really rewarding to see how well they’re playing, and how much they’re enjoying their football. "Big moments for Jess Lingard today, of course great for the captain to get his hat-trick which made it easier to take him off. [Was he OK about coming off?] Probably not but I've got a group to look after and there were some heavy tackles flyinhg about. "We said before the game, no more yellow cards. That was a key part of the second half, definitely. "We want to keep momentum, so we’ll have to have a think about the team we want to put out [against Belgium]. There’s an opportunity as well that players that need a match, but also we want to keep winning football matches. It’s a nice decision to have." 3:21PM Breaking news about England's anthem for the Belgium game It's been changed to this for Messrs Walker, Stones, Maguire, Rose, Delph and Vardy: 3:18PM Ruben Loftus-Cheek has a word "To win 6-1 in the World Cup is fantastic. I’m delighted with that. I think we want to put on a good performance for the fans, but also for ourselves. "For such a young captain [Harry is] so vocal. I think everyone respects him massively, what he’s done for Tottenham and bringing it in for England. Ruben Loftus-Cheek made his first World Cup start and it was his shot that Harry Kane deflected in for his hat-trick Credit: AP Photo/Alastair Grant "We work on set pieces a lot, and to see it coming good in the games when we prepare so much for it. It’s such a big factor in games, we put in so much work and we’re glad that it keeps coming out on the pitch." 3:14PM Ashley Young takes the mic "The togetherness I’ve seen is incredible. Off the pitch everybody mixes with each other. Everybody wants the ball, nobody shies away from the ball. We’ve got to keep on doing that, keep showing our confidence and keep playing the way we have. The start of something good Credit: JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images "We’ve just got to keep our feet on the ground and keep working hard in training. This could be the start of something good. 3:10PM Relive the match in a minute 3:09PM Here are Ben Rumsby's ratings England vs Panama player ratings 3:08PM Jesse Lingard speaks I thrive in that role. It's great to be around the lads. There's a great team spirit. The confidence is flowing, I don't see why not [we can't go all the way] but we take each game as it comes. [You don't seem very exuberant] I'm always like this in interviews. 3:06PM Opta's statistical pointers England have won both of their opening two group stage games at a World Cup tournament for the third time, also doing so in 1982 and 2006. This was England’s biggest ever win in a major tournament match (World Cup and European Championships). This was only the fifth occasion a side had scored five goals before half-time in a World Cup match, and the first since Germany did so against Brazil in the 2014 semi-final. England scored as many goals in this match as they had in their previous seven World Cup matches combined (6). Only in 1966 (11) have England scored more goals in a single World Cup tournament than they have in 2018 (8, same as 1954 and 1990). John Stones became the first England defender to score two goals in a single World Cup match. Harry Kane is only the third England player to score a hat-trick in a World Cup match, after Geoff Hurst vs Germany in the 1966 final and Gary Lineker vs Poland in 1986. England striker Harry Kane is the first player to have scored at least twice in both of his first two ever World Cup appearances since Poland’s Grzegorz Lato in 1974. Lato went on to win the Golden Boot at that tournament. England’s Harry Kane is now the leading scorer at the 2018 World Cup with five goals. He’s scored with all five of his shots on target in the tournament. 3:02PM Harry Kane speaks Fantastic. So proud of the boys. Just enjoying being here.They started pretty well but we've been working on the setpieces and it all came together. The match ball is one of my lucky ones but I'll take it. It's been brilliant, both sets of fans. Ours have always been great but it's what the World Cup is all about. We're not going to get too far ahead of ourselves but you have to believe. There's a long way to go but we have to stick to our game plan. A bit disappointed to concede at the end. We'll go into Belgium looking for a win but let's see what happens. Now we'll rest, recover and get ready for next week. 2:57PM Here's your chance to rate the players England player rater 2:53PM Full time England 6-1 Panama A hat-trick for Kane, two for Stones and a screamer from Lingard give England their record victory in tournament football. They led 5-0 at half-time and then squeezed the game, harboured their reserves and celebrate a famous victory. 2:51PM 90+2 min England 6-1 Panama The game has pretty much petered out in the second half but I suppose that is evidence of clever game management and resource protection by England. Lingard, a picture of joy, juggles a plastic cup with his feet while sitting on the bench. 2:49PM 90 min England 6-1 Panama Young's cross is flicked on towards the centre of goal and Stones, on a hat-trick, just fails to connect with a stabbed finish. Penedo gobbles it up gratefully. We'll have four more minutes. 2:48PM 89 min England 6-1 Panama There are horns and cow bells contributing to the cacophony. England have a free kick about 35m out, left of centre. Young will take. 2:46PM 87 min England 6-1 Panama Vardy sprints down the right, whitewash on the soles of his feet, and beats Davis. He fires over a deep cross outside the box for Delph who has to jump high to trap it, which he accomplishes but lands awkwardly so mis-hist his pass. 2:44PM 86 min England 6-1 Panama 'Nothing wrong with a boring second half,' says Danny Murphy and, of course, it makes sense. Rashford for Lingard, though, would have been something worth seeing. 2:42PM 84 min England 6-1 Panama England pass it around slowly around the back - killing time and the game understandably. Vardy has hardly touched the ball. 2:41PM 82 min England 6-1 Panama Sterling tacks in from the left flank on to his right foot and sends a curving shot whistling past the far post. Hit very sweetly on the instep but not enough whip to bring it back in. 2:39PM 80 min England 6-1 Panama The goal was set up by one sub and scored by the other. Henderson, acting captain, gives the players a rollicking and tells them to step it back up. England 6 - 1 Panama (Felipe Baloy, 78 min) 2:38PM 78 min England 6-1 Panama And that goal is greeted more raucously than any of the preceding six by the crowd who have embraced their hordes of Panamanian guests. 2:37PM GOAL!! England 6-1 Panama Baloy - the 37-year-old - does what Torres didn't, connects with a sliding half-volley, this lone from about 8m when England's offside trap falls apart from a free-kick on the left. Poor defending. Crisp finish. 2:35PM 75 min England 6-0 Panama Rodriguez sprints between Walker and Young and gets to it first to cross. It's overhit but Rose lets it go out for a corner on the right nit knowing if there was anyone behind him. They whip in the corner and it's glanced on to the back post. Torres telescopes out his right leg and lunges to tap it in from a metre but bludgeons it wide. 2:33PM 74 min England 6-0 Panama He chips it to the far post where Maguire wins it and knocks it back across. Another touch sends it out to the 18-yard line where Henderson, shouting Loftus-Cheek to 'leave it!' hooks a roundhouse volley - a 'Ronnie Whelan' for older readers, and hooks it powerfully round the left post. 2:31PM 72 min England 6-0 Panama Ashley Young, now playing on the right, takes a free-kick from the left. England's sixth came from an inadvertent deflection off Harry Kane Credit: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images 2:28PM 68 min England 6-0 Panama Murillo loses the ball on the right and it allows time for substitutions. Rose replaces Trippier who took a knock. That's six Tykes. For Panama Barcenas and Perez go off, Baloy and Arroyo come on. 2:26PM 65 min England 6-0 Panama Barcenas darts down the inside right channel and has a chance from a tight angle but Pickford is out smartly to blocktackle him and Stones and Walker deal with the ball comfortably. Here comes another Yorkshireman in Rose. White shirts, white rose. 2:24PM 63 min England 6-0 Panama Harry Kane is now the leading scorer in the tournament and the third England World Cup hat-trick man after Sir Geoff Hurst and Gary Lineker. 2:22PM 60 min England 6-0 Panama No, the goal stands. Loftus-Cheek's shot hits Kane's heel and balloons over the keeper. That;s his last touch. Kane is going off to be replaced by Vardy and Lingard will be replaced by Delph. This is not England any more. It's Yorkshire v Panama. England 6 - 0 Panama (Harry Kane, 62 min) 2:20PM GOAL!! England 6-0 Panama Kane has his hat-trick. VAR might scrub this off, though. 2:19PM 60 min England 5-0 Panama Panama move the ball to the right and back again as England set themselves in compact defensive lines to win the ball back. Stones has three runners upfield but doesn't make the right choice. 2:17PM 58 min England 5-0 Panama Panama continue to engage in some after-tackle filth, hands in faces, sly kicks and digs. 2:16PM 56 min England 5-0 Panama Pickford taps it to Walker who plays it up to Henderson and he gives Kane a hare to chase with a long ball up the inside-right channel. Escobar, who has improved, gets there first. 2:15PM 55 min England 5-0 Panama No criticism that England have not resumed as they finished the half. They're trying to find their rhythm. 2:13PM 54 min England 5-0 Panama Fingers burnt by the penalty, they keep their hands largely to themselves this time. But Trippier's centre is well-defended. Possession: England vs Panama 2:12PM 52 min England 5-0 Panama With all the caveats about how useless Panama have been defensively and in the final third, Sterling is playing very well, adopting some excellent positions and playing some penetrating passes. England have a throw on the right and give it to Loftus-Cheek who tries to round Escobar by the byline but is tackled. England corner. Panama;s defenders are warned again. 2:09PM 50 min England 5-0 Panama Kane has the ball on halfway and Sterling hurtles out of the blocks beyond the defence when Kane releases it. Brilliant run but Kane's pass was too heavy. They had beaten the offside trap but the throughball was too close to Penedo who pelted out to win the race with Sterling. 2:07PM 48 min England 5-0 Panama But Barcenas misjudges Perez's run and plays the wrong pass into the box. England pounce on it and set off on a rapid counter. 2:06PM 47 min England 5-0 Panama Panama are passing the ball around slowly, keen, one thinks, not to be humiliated further. They inject some pace now and work a triangle up the right. 2:05PM 46 min England 5-0 Panama England attack up the right, Loftus-Cheek and Trippier combining well and crossing to the back post for Kane who beat Torres but cannot squeeze an attempt on goal. 2:02PM Praise indeed What can i say, unbelievable! #WorldCup— Sir Geoff Hurst (@TheGeoffHurst) June 24, 2018 1:58PM John Stones's second and Harry Kane's second John Stones scores his second England goal Credit: AP Photo/Victor Caivano And here's Harry Kane's second penalty. He went the same way but even if the keeper had it would have amputated his right hand at the wrist. Harry Kane scores his fourth World Cup goal of 2018 Credit: REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado 1:55PM Half-time reading Here's a gallery of the worst teams at international tournaments. Here's Lingard's goal and Sterling deserves great praise for his cute pass: Jesse Lingard puts England 3-0 up Credit: REUTERS/Matthew Childs Jesse Lingard celebrates after scoring his first World Cup goal Credit: AP Photo/Matthias Schrader 1:50PM Sorry went too early - it's only half-time of course Here's Paul Hayward on the first goal: "Grappling in the box looks clever until you ignore the runner, as Panama did there with John Stones, who darted between wrestling matches to put England in front.@ 1:49PM Half-time What a terrific first-half performance form England. They lead a World Cup game 5-0 and there's still 45 minutes to come. If Panama finish with 11 men I'm a Dutchman. 1:48PM 45+1 min England 5-0 Panama Maguire is smacked in the mouth by Cooper who swings his arm as they leap. That looked deliberate. Panama are losing all discipline and the plot. Looks like they'll go down swinging, literally. Dirty devils. 1:47PM 44 min England 5-0 Panama So Kane joins Lukaku and Ronaldo on four goals apiece. Goal: England ( 45 + 1 min ) 1:46PM GOAL! England 5-0 Panama Escobar and Torres pantomime disapproval at the penalty and are booked which eats up more time for Kane to settle himself. But he isn't fazed. He torpedoes it into the same place. 1:44PM England penalty! Kane is being grappled at a corner. The referee warns the players not to do it three times but they don't listen. Godoy tries to bodyslam Kane. 1:43PM 40 min England 4-0 Panama Amazing. Henderson receives the pass on the edge of the penalty area back to goal and hooks a cross to Kane beyond the right post. He nods it across to Sterling whose header from a couple of metres is saved by Penedo and Stones is first to the rebound on the right and forces his header into the roof of the net. England 4 - 0 Panama (John Stones, 40 min) 1:40PM GOAL!! England 4-0 Panama John Stones from a perfectly-executed free-kick routine. 1:39PM 36 min England 3-0 Panama Lingard, battered from pillar to post for the first 15 minutes, glides in from the left to take Sterling's stabbed pass and bends a venomous shot from the left side of the D around the onrushing, panicking defenders and into the top right corner of the goal. This is a bit like England v Poland from 1986. England 3 - 0 Panama (Jesse Lingard, 36 min) Goal: England ( 36 min ) 1:36PM GOAL!! England 3-0 Panama Lingard with a lovely right-foot shot from 20m, steered into the top corner. 1:35PM 33 min England 2-0 Panama Lingard bails Maguire out at the back with a diligent and dogged tracking run after Maguire loses his position. He has many attributes Maguire but he needs too screw the nut. There are too many errors. 1:34PM 30 min England 2-0 Panama England free-kick 35m out. Trippier will take. The break affords Murphy and Mowbray some time for golf banter. Trippier strikes it well, curling it deep beyond the back post where it is met by Maguire's run. He heads it back across goal and over the other post. He should have squared it to his team-mates in the middle or gone for goal but it turned into neither one thing or the other. Harry Kane strikes the penalty Credit: JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images 1:30PM 28 min England 2-0 Panama Much better from Panama who enjoy a couple of minutes of sinuous movement and sharp passing. They work an opening through Cooper and Perez for Rodriguez to run on to a threaded pass in the box, to the left. He has Godoy peeling off his marker and free but lashes a shot from an acute angle into orbit. What a waste. 1:29PM 26 min England 2-0 Panama Young penalised for kicking Cooper where the sun doesn't shine as he raised his leg to control a bouncing ball. Henderson hooks a lob over the back four for Sterling who wins it but was offside. Ruben Loftus-Cheek has been booked for a foul just after the third kick-off. Here's Kane putting the penalty in something my son and his schoofriends call 'top bins': Goal: England ( 22 min ) Harry Kane buries England's second from the spot Credit: Jan Kruger/Getty Images) 1:25PM 24 min England 2-0 Panama Panama's strategy seems to be to inject as much needle into this as possible, after all sorts of niggly fouls and delaying tactics, they complain that England take too long in their celebrations, this after forestalling the taking of the pen by almost 150 seconds. 1:23PM 22 min England 2-0 Panama Blimey! That was some penalty. He almost ripped the net with his thunderfoot. 1:22PM GOAL!! England 2-0 Panama Yes he can, despite some shoving from Barcenas on Lingard on the 18-yard line and Gomez trying to spook the taker. Smashes it into the top-right corner. 1:21PM No offside So Kane will take the penalty. Can he score in his fifth successive match for England? 1:20PM England penalty! Lingard bundled over by Escobar and Torres as he ran down the inside-right channel. VAR is checking whether he was offside. 1:19PM 18 min England 1-0 Panama Torres kicks across Sterling's foot and catches his studs. He goes down screaming blue murder until the ref stops the game for his self-inflicted pain. England 1 - 0 Panama (John Stones, 8 min) 1:18PM 16 min England 1-0 Panama For the third time Panama exploit hesitation from Young and Maguire on the left of England's defence to dial up the speed and shift the ball inside quickly. Barcenas, striding forward down the inside-left channel, meets the pass from Murillo and bends a left-foot shot that has Pickford scrambling across goal and diving but it trims the outside of the side-netting. Close, though. 1:15PM 14 min England 1-0 Panama Dawdling by Torres invites Kane twice to have a run at the defence but he can't keep the ball under control and the opposition recover. Here's Stones' goal: Stones puts England into the lead Credit: Alex Morton/Getty Images 1:13PM 12 min England 1-0 Panama England lose possession cheaply from the free-kick, Maguire's poise and precision absent so far. Barcenas accelerates away from him and into the box. Walker clears up the first mess but England cause another that Panama's haste squanders. Walker's lunge stopped Perez tapping in at the back post. 1:11PM 11 min England 1-0 Panama Cooper lunges in at Lingard just past halfway and clatters into his shin pad malevolently. Yellow card. 1:10PM 9 min England 1-0 Panama Maguire and Kane were being grappled and obstructed with octopus arms but Stones wriggled free of his assailant and stooped to steer in a bullet header from Trippier's fine corner. 1:08PM GOAL! England 1-0 Panama John Stones buries a header from the penalty spot. 1:08PM 7 min England 0-0 Panama Good pass from Walker, diagonally out to the right flank, for Trippier's clever run and teh full-back wins a corner. 1:07PM 6 min England 0-0 Panama Panama's tempo has caught England on the hop a bit and Rodriguez, the victim of Henderson's foul, is felled again as they snap into tackles. The free-kick is taken too long and England come back upfield but at no great pace. 1:06PM 5 min England 0-0 Panama Panama take the free-kick into the box Kane heads clear and Barcenas wallops a 25m shot over the bar. Then Panama exploit the short goalkick and Maguire's poor pass to break down the left and find space for Godoy to shoot and he too thrashes it high and wide. Terrible finish but England invited the pressure with dozy play there. 1:04PM 3 min England 0-0 Panama After 90secs treatment Lingard is passed fit to continue and Panama restart, knocking it down the left where Henderson is penalised for a strong tackle. 1:03PM 2 min England 0-0 Panama And drags a pass back from the byline to Lingard whose first touch is clumsy and he has to go up to try to win it back in the air. Gomez elbows him in the mouth as they challenge for it but the referee deems it accidental. He did swing his arm back but he isn't penalised. 1:02PM 1 min England 0-0 Panama Panama 's huddle finally breaks up and England kick-off, attacking to the left and overloaded on the right flank. They roll it back to Stones and the three players on the right bomb forward but they play it short and move it to the left and back again. Trippier slips a pass past Davis and Loftus-Cheek rounds him. 12:59PM Two minutes to go The players chat and shake their legs. 12:57PM Some Panama fans and players Have gone for the full Dallaglio, moist eyed and bellowing it out. Tune. 12:56PM England stand with their arms across each other's shoulders For the national anthem and when it ends Harry Kane shouts 'Come on!, Come on!' There are far more Panama fans there than England's and they sing lustily along. 12:52PM Jesse Lingard Is being interviewed by Gabby Logan and is asked to do his Scouse and Cockney accents. The first is passable, the second risible. Pace Dr Johnson: It's not done well; but you are surprised to find it done at all. 12:47PM Pre-hydration routines This really should be the match shirt. Harry Kane takes a swig Credit: Maja Hitij - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images 12:45PM The temperature is heading up 34C Gareth Southgate says he will be using England's hydration strategy but there will be no official water breaks. On the Brexit scale 34C is 93F so he will have to employ his substitutes judiciously. "We think we will have the vast majority of the play, which is good in this heat, but we have to move the ball quickly and use width intelligently. The prize for today is to qualify with a game to spare but we have to concentrate on our performance. We need to be patient." 12:36PM Alan Shearer and Gary Lineker Have just embraced and jumped up and down, a la Chandler and Joey, in imitation of the excitement of the Panama World Cup panel. Them Shearer reveals that he has had a word with Harry Kane and told him to speak to the referee about holding at corners before they are taken. Now the BBC is using Joy Divsion's Day of the Lords for a montage. I applaud their taste but it's sacrilege to have people talking over it. Music is to be listened to, not deployed as background. 12:28PM Those starting XIs in black and white and their records England (3-1-4-1-1) Pickford; Walker, Stones, Maguire; Henderson; Trippier, Loftus-Cheek, Lingard, Young; Sterling; Kane. World Cup record: England Panama (4-5-1) Penedo; Murillo, R Torres, Escobar, Davis; Barcenas, Cooper, Gomez, Godoy, J Rodriguez; Perez. World Cup record: Panama Referee Gehad Grisha (History) 12:21PM England wear white, Panama red See how our Anna Wintour, Thom Gibbs, assesses the strips: World Cup kits ranked 12:20PM Spoiler alert Ninety minutes' ebb and flow can be a bit of a distraction for some. If you'd like to know the final score now, have a go on the Telegraph's ingenious AI forecaster: World Cup 2018 Simulator Single Game 12:08PM The heat is oppressive Jason Burt reports: The air conditioning in the England dressing room has been turned up to the maximum ahead of kick-off against Panama in an attempt to keep the players as cool as possible before the game starts. The players will also be given a fresh kit at half-time and iced towels to try and control their body temperatures with the temperatures on the pitch here in Nizhny Novgorod soaring towards the high 30 degrees celsius. The England medical staff are confident that the air conditioning in the dressing room will help although there may be a concern that the dry air could affect the breathing of the players, especially those susceptible to asthma. However the medics do not believe this will be a problem with dehumidifiers in use and, because the stadium is new, an air conditioning system which means it is ice cold inside the dressing room. In previous matches in such conditions England have also used fans inside the dressing room with players wearing ice vests as they warmed up but the more light-weight training gear is believed to be sufficient this time. Sometimes kit is also sprayed with a cooling agent and water to also help. A big issue will be hydration. Players will be urged to take on board as much fluid as possible and to hydrate at every opportunity during the match. The design of the stadium means that around half of the pitch will be in shade at kick-off but heat will undoubtedly be a factor. Gareth Southgate acknowledges the England supporters before the game Credit: REUTERS/Matthew Childs It may be roasting but Southgate's not taking off that weskit for anyone. Deux bieres et un pastis, garçon, s'il-vous plait. 12:04PM England make one change Ruben Loftus-Cheek comes in for Dele Alli and will partner Jesse Lingard in the midfield duo ahead of Jordan Henderson. Raheem Sterling starts and Marcus Rashford will continue as an impact sub. He's a terrific talent, Rashford, but I can see the sense in employing his impact as a substitute and his understanding of the opportunities the role provides - he seems more aware of them than Sterling and his better control in tight areas can turn tired defenders. If Sterling does his job and keeps running hard down the channels, Rashford can cash in later on. 11:59AM England team confirmed Here's the #ThreeLions teamsheet for today's game, as @rubey_lcheek comes in to replace @dele_official. �� pic.twitter.com/HztXwZSp0B— England (@England) June 24, 2018 11:58AM How England should go about their business today Here's our 140-cap columnist's take: What England must get right on and off the pitch to beat Panama and advance in this World Cup 11:55AM And another well-wisher Whose original intention was to retire at the end of this, his fourth World Cup, but wisely decided to call it a day 10 months early: Come on @England!! #ThreeLions— Wayne Rooney (@WayneRooney) June 24, 2018 11:52AM Panama avoid team sheet melodrama By naming an unchanged XI for today's match 24 hours early: Panama Penedo; Murillo, Roman Torres, Escobar, Davis; Barcenas, Cooper, Gomez, Godoy, Jose Luis Rodriguez; Perez. Substitutes Calderon, Cummings, Gabriel Torres, Diaz, Machado, Pimentel, Arroyo, Ovalle, Tejada, Avila, Baloy, Alex Rodriguez. Pointers from the Belgium game - Murillo is pretty good, Roman Torres is an ox, Barcenas a snapper and young Rodriguez is going to be a fine player. 11:46AM England fans begin to arrive at the stadium Flying the flag Credit: Owen Humphreys/PA Wire Robert Mendick and Wil Crisp report: "Travelling England fans have never been so middle-class. Nizhny Novgorod, a city on the Volga once so sensitive it was ‘closed’ to visitors in Soviet times, was laid siege on Saturday by a small army of England fans made up of lecturers, chartered accountants, investment bankers, company CEOs and the like. Read the rest of the article here ... [The game's gone] 11:39AM A man, a plan ... a palindrome Opposition research - plenty of troubling stuff that comes under that category in today's newspapers. This is far more wholesome: 16 things you didn't know about Panama 11:32AM England alumni reporting for duty This is what it is all about. Come on England!!!!!! ������ #ENGPANpic.twitter.com/3Gul6XnOh7— Ian Wright (@IanWright0) June 24, 2018 Arms up for a victory today! Come on @England �������������� ����‍♂ #bbcworldcup#russia2018#ENGPANpic.twitter.com/zOSzN5tISx— Alan Shearer (@alanshearer) June 24, 2018 The guys wearing @england shirt today feel like a group who have an understanding of what the manager wants from them & who believe in all he asks. A recipe for good days ahead. Let’s go ������ #england#worldcup#ENG#3lionspic.twitter.com/cRyonsKbcW— Rio Ferdinand (@rioferdy5) June 24, 2018 11:26AM Ruben Loftus-Cheek should make his first World Cup start Here's what Ruud Gullit had to say about him last September: "I always loved this guy, also when he was at Chelsea. I saw him playing yesterday as well. “He’s so influential and I think the more he plays, the better he gets. He knows how to play his game, he knows how to go forward. Ruben Loftus-Cheek is expected to start in place of Dele Alli Credit: David Ramos - FIFA “I want him in the centre, he needs to have the ball. Technical, strong, he is a fantastic player. He is the one who has the brains. “He’s a future England player, this one. I really believe in this boy, he’s a good player." Here's what Paul Hayward has to say about his selection: Ruben Loftus-Cheek can carry the flag for England's thwarted generation 11:13AM England missed a spectacular night in St Petersburg People watch fireworks and a brig with scarlet sails on the Neva River during the Scarlet Sails festivities marking school graduation in St Petersburg Credit: Photo/Dmitri Lovetsky 11:07AM Team news Matt Scott reports that England will make only one change rather than the anticipated two and that Raheem Sterling, scorer of 18 Premier League goals and provider of 11 Premier League assists en route to the title last year, has been retained in the starting XI. Read the full story here. Raheem Sterling will start his fourth World Cup match for England and second in succession in Nizhny Novgorod against Panama Credit: Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images 10:55AM England's qualification game In an intriguing twist to Wonderful World, Gareth Southgate adapted the words of Sam Cooke, Herb Alpert and Lou Adler to say history is not the important thing for this team’. Biology? Science book? The French they took? Word came there none. The only thing that matters, he says, is making their own history and they can certainly share an achievement today if they defeat Panama and join ‘Ron’s 22’ from 1982 and Sven’s band of Baden-Baden Charlie Big Potatoes from 2006 as England sides who have won their opening two group games at a World Cup. The England manager, by contrast with his players, is a student of history (no word on geography, trigonometry, algebra or what a slide rule is for). Southgate is known to the friends he grew up with at Crystal Palace as ‘'Nord’, a name bestowed on him by Wally Downes, but it is one that reflects the observational sharpness of a dressing-room wit. The young Gareth, with his eight O-levels and relatively affluent upbringing in Crawley, contrasted markedly with his more cocky and shrewdly streetwise South London contemporaries in the Palace youth team. His considered, unhurried way of speaking reminded Downes of Denis Norden, erstwhile co-writer of Take It From Here and a regular TV face hosting It’ll be Alright on the Night and speaking with his mouth full while selling Nuttall’s Mintoes. In an age when anyone in the game who spoke measuredly or enjoyed reading was instantly derided as ‘Prof’ or ‘Brains’, a descendant of the old Army contempt for ‘book learning’ characterised in It Ain’t Half Hot Mum’s ‘Mr La-Di-Dah Gunner Graham’, ‘Nord’ was a cut above. World Cup 2018 | The best of the Telegraph's coverage It stuck but his greenness did not. With the help of the goalkeeper Andy Woodman, the Hush Puppies and Ronnie Corbett golf sweaters that were so mocked behind his back were eased out and a lifelong friendship chronicled in a joint autobiography, Woody and Nord, nurtured them both. Southgate’s intelligence and application benefited him, too, and he became the youngest full-time captain in the country in 1993-94, the season he led Palace back into the Premier League. After Palace’s relegation in 1995, Southgate left in the summer for Aston Villa where he expected to join Andy Townsend and Ian Taylor in his usual central midfield role. So did Brian Little, the man who signed him for £2.5 million, but a fortnight later could not resist buying Mark Draper when Leicester finally agreed to sell. Little, an underrated, strangely neglected manager, put him between Ugo Ehiogu and Paul McGrath in a back-three, a move so successful that England called him up after only eight games in the position. Not what he seems: Gareth Southgate Credit: Matthias Hangst/Getty Images When Des Walker lost his aura of impregnability in the early Nineties, England reverted to type at the back, ‘head-on-a-stick’ centre-halfs, as Gary Lineker called them, or export maypoles, the static object around which foreigners would dance. Terry Venables wanted something more progressive, a centre-back who was comfortable moving out of defence to pick up opponents attacking from deeper positions. Southgate flourished in the role and, despite the penalty miss in the Euro 96 semi-final that will forever shadow him, continued to perform astutely in Glenn Hoddle’s sides, never better than during the 0-0 draw with Italy that secured qualification for the 1998 World Cup. His game continued to evolve well into his thirties, becoming as accomplished an orthodox central defender in a back-four as he had been in a three and it is a testament to his quality and durability that when Rio Ferdinand was banned for missing a drugs test in 2003, Sir Alex Ferguson immediately tried to sign the 33-year-old from Middlesbrough. How England can get the job done against physical Panama Looking back it seems obvious that he was born to manage but given that he has moved at the Football Association from Head of Elite Development to Under-21 head coach to England manager, it is odd to recall that he succeeded Steve McClaren at the Riverside without a Pro Licence, in the face of much opposition from the League Managers Association, and had to qualify on the job. Southgate looks the model of a modern coach, even down to the DH Lawrence beard - cosmopolitan, flexible and cerebral. Yet there are echoes too of Malcolm Allison and Dave Sexton, whose undervalued toughness complemented their sprightly creativity and aptitude for teaching. But don’t be fooled by appearance. Twice in the past he has identified that inspiration is key - first when he witheringly said of Eriksson’s half-time team-talk when England had just conceded a stoppage-time equaliser in the 2002 World Cup quarter-final: “We were expecting Winston Churchill and instead got Iain Duncan Smith.” And then again in 2006 when advocating a successor for Eriksson: “I want an Englishman who’s going to say: ‘Remember Churchill.’” If anyone in Nizhny Novgorod hears strains of ‘We shall fight on the beaches’ delivered in the extraordinary, deliberate tones of Denis Norden this afternoon, there can be only one culprit: a man who continues to defy all preconceptions. As for Panama, who fought bravely against Belgium, kettled them and hobbled them with some cynical and wild tackles, the 30C heat in the city once known as Gorky after Maxim, though Sorrento and Capri had similar claims over the writer, should have a greater toll on much older legs. They are a veteran side, a tough side and play with genuinely intimidating muscular athleticism. Any thoughts that they may trial a new approach here have been thoroughly debunked by their veteran defensive midfielder Gabriel Gomez. “We are men, we are aggressive,” he said. “Football is played with aggression, with desire. We are a team that knows how to play and when we have to fight, we fight.” For all that, they are pretty enlightened technically if not always tactically and can open up a defence with decent movement - at no great pace - and some inspired passing angles. Against Belgium they were unable to commit runners consistently to help out their lone 37-year-old forward and settled for an attritional scrap that frustrated world-class talents such as Eden Hazard and Kevin De Bruyne and made them look pedestrian. It took a terrific strike from Dries Mertens to prise Panama’s vice-grip around their throats early in the second half after a stultifying first 45 minutes. Class will out but England and their supporters will have to be patient.

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